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A Pandemic fear.

If I should die before you wake,

Forgive

My every mistake

My every harsh word

My every disappointment

My every frailty

If I should die before you wake,

Remember

Our love began on the dark side of the mountain

We crawled through every ravine

We scaled every jagged cliff

And we reached the top together

Hand in hand

If I should die before you wake,

Know

That every moment spent with you gave me joy

That every breath I took was for and because of you

That you gave me courage in the darkness

That your every touch and grace gave my soul meaning

If I should die before you wake

Keep close

To your heart that each morning

I awaken you was precious

To the very fiber of your being

That you were my moral compass

To your soul

That my whole life was defined by your grace

If I should die before you wake

Take care

Of my boys

They were more than dogs to me

Their undying love and devotion gave life meaning

They gave me peace, protection, and purpose

They were friends in the foxhole

If I should die before you wake

Do not

Mourn for me because I will be fine

On the other side

Recall all our precious moments

The pleasures, the happiness, the gestures, the kindness

The wonderful love and life we shared

If I should die before you wake

Never

Put me in the ground

Cremate my remains

With your small hands throw them in the breeze

On our favorite cliff

And let the winds scatter them across the valley

We love

If I should die before you wake

Hold dear

To your heart that I will sit at the creek’s edge

Until you pass out of the tunnel of life

That you will cross the creek to me, I promise

And that, together, hand in hand

We will walk down the new path

God has given us

If I should die before you wake

I always loved you

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Expressions Of Love From Prison

Prison is a world of caged humanity, removed and isolated from normal life. But this enclosed wasteland, with all its conscious and unconscious brutalities, cannot trap love in the heart.

In September 1981, I opened a letter to the woman of my life (now my wife of 37 years) as a prisoner with these words from behind the fenced world of a prison called Angola—a sprawling 18,000-acre plantation where thousands of inmates and former slaves were killed and buried beneath the soil of its rich Tunica Hills:

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