The Dash
by Linda Ellis


I read of a man who stood to speak at the funeral of his friend.
He referred to the dates on her tombstone from the beginning . . . to the end.

He noted that first came the date of her birth and spoke of the second with tears,
but he said that what mattered most of all was the dash between those years.

For the dash represents all the time that she spent alive on earth,
and now only those who loved her know what that little line is worth.

For it matters not, how much we own - the cars, the houses, and the cash.
What matters is how we live and love and how we spend our dash.

So think about this long and hard, are there things you’d like to change?
For you never know how much time is left.

If you just slow down enough to consider what’s true and what’s real,
and always try to understand the way other people feel.

And . . . be less quick to anger, and show appreciation more
and love the people in our lives like we’ve never loved before.

If we treat each other with respect and more often wear a smile,
remembering that this special dash might only last a little while.

So, when your eulogy is being read with your life’s action to rehash . . .
would you be pleased with the things they have to say about how you spent your dash?