While I am not yet ready to start posting about my back country hike, the timing is right for this post, which admittedly formed a part of that hike.
Two months ago today I lost a good friend and this tribute was a bit tough to write. Lloyd loved the outdoors, camping, fishing, boating, just being outdoors. It seemed logical to me to take him along on my hike in the mountains. Lloyd was also the guy you wanted around for a sing along, campfire or otherwise, hence the musical references (his favourites and ours). Rest in Peace, Lloyd.
Last Coffee with a Friend
We talked a lot over forty-three years.
We shared many laughs, we had a few beers.
One day, sad news came through a veil of tears,
no last chance for goodbye, my greatest fear.
Lloyd had always been there, my lifelong friend,
offering help and guidance without end.
When hard work was required, a hand he’d lend.
How to honour this man, I did not ken.
Suddenly, I knew how to pay him back.
I clad his photo with waterproof wrap.
I’d bring my friend on my back country track.
He’d add no weight to my 40 pound pack,
Over tall passes, zigging and zagging,
with each plodding step, my strength was flagging.
Just when it seemed my spirits were sagging,
came Lloyd’s soft strum, Puff the Magic Dragon.
Up that last steep hill, camp getting closer,
on downhill trails, I was a bulldozer.
how had I persevered, full disclosure,
t’was his tune, Farewell to Nova Scotia.
I woke with a start that cool mountain night,
I’d forgotten my friend, that was not right.
Then I heard his voice say, “Son, its alright!
We’ll talk tomorrow, at morning’s first light.”
As he’d promised, we shared one last coffee
and talked for a while by the tall pine tree.
“It’s time I moved on, Son”, he smiled wryly,
“I’ll not be far, if you ever need me.”