Nothing Gold Can Stay

Nancy Hilpert

The Secret Sits

Poetry and reflections by Nancy Hilpert, Lynne’s friend. They enjoyed gold in the fall of Lynne’s life as she courageously endures Alzheimer’s. Lynne focused her faded blue eyes on me as she heard every word and smiled.  #alzauthors #alzheimersSpeaks #endalz #Alzwa @ALZAUTHORS

Robert Frost

We dance round in a ring and suppose,
But the Secret sits in the middle and knows.

Nothing Gold Can Stay
Robert Frost

Nature’s first green is gold,
Her hardest hue to hold.
Her early leaf’s a flower;
But only so an hour.
Then leaf subsides to leaf.
So Eden sank to grief,
So dawn goes down to day.
Nothing gold can stay. 

Hi Friends, 

happy October!  The summer who overstayed her lease has definitely fled and we see and feel this seasonal shifting happening. 

We are getting a nice mix of rainy days and sunny mild days and the coloring leaves on the trees are still lingering between green and wherever they’re headed…yellow, gold, orange, red, maroon, brown…

All of this makes for good walking weather and great visual stimulation as the bright fall colors light up cloudy skies and brighten the more noticeably shortening days

I love living again in a neighborhood where the streets are lined with deciduous trees

it takes me back to my childhood, living in the little farm town of Deer Park in Eastern Washington, walking home from grade school, down the Maple and Oak tree lined Main Street. Those beauties must have been planted long before because they were massive and, –just like the ones I live around now in Seattle, also planted long ago, –bounteous in their delivery of leaves come the Autumnal drop in temperatures. 

I loved to scrape and stomp through the massive piles that filled both sides of the streets.

I was out walking with my friend Lynne the other day and couldn’t resist jumping off the sidewalk into the piles of dry leaves, crunching them under my feet, the sound was exhilarating.

I was doing it to both entertain myself and to also try to lift her spirits. 

It’s so great to finally live near her, finally, to be able to pop by her place and take her out for an iced coffee and savory tart at our fave bakery Macrina.

She’s been dealt a tough hand with a terminal diagnosis, but she’s courageously enduring. 

She says to me she’s waiting.

We know it won’t be forever.  

“Nothing gold can stay.”

Time with her is precious, but who knows how long that will be available to us. 

It’s scary and sad to consider losing her. Saying goodbye sooner rather than later.

This too becomes a practice if I follow the Secret and stay in the Middle.

Being with it, I can touch into that gently, knowing its tender to consider that those we love most, who love us most, will not be with us at some future date.

And I can see how much more is at stake for her than for me.

And when I feel that sadness, I can let it roll down my cheeks freely and feel it heave through my chest, like a wave.

And when she asks me ‘what’s wrong’ I can look her in the eye and say: 

Everything and Nothing. Everything is perfect as it should be in its time.

And I can open my music app and play some Dolly Parton on the speakerphone as we return to her facility, singing loud as we march arm in arm down the sidewalk, stomping on the dry leaves, not caring how we appear to the world around us, except that we are transmitting joy and connection. She giggles at me, and this lifts my spirits.

We know they won’t be crisp and crunchy for long, once the rains soak them

Now is the time to sing loud, to stomp and scrape and crunch.

Now is the time to practice letting go.

Now is the season of sitting in the middle, of soaking up that gold.

3 thoughts on “Nothing Gold Can Stay

  1. keithcrussell October 21, 2021 / 2:56 pm

    Yikes I am a wreck. Thank you Nancy, pure joy and sadness. Everything and nothing.

  2. Sandy Hirsch October 15, 2021 / 10:59 am

    This is so beautiful. Thank you for sharing it. Perfect.

  3. pbejerano October 15, 2021 / 9:35 am

    Nancy, This is so beautiful. I felt like I was there with you, stomping through the leaves. Thank you for this gift.

    Pam Russell Bejerano


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