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Legacy

I cannot think of a better message to share today than the one in David Roth’s folks song called Legacy.


Blessings, fellow Pilgrims

Rev. Susan




LEGACY © 1984

David Roth: "When my sister decided to change careers, she asked me if I could write something for the occasion of her transition. A month (and several hours a day) later... "


An aging man, a younger one, and a woman in her prime

Connected by their circumstance of birth

A father, son and daughter somehow all obsessed to find

The mark that each will leave upon this earth


Alone is his apartment in his favorite easy chair

The aging man endures his failing health

Nowadays preoccupied arranging his affairs

And adding up the value of his wealth


He says a prayer and falls asleep, then somewhere in a dream

He's searching for his children and he's calling out to them

"Will I leave enough behind to help you get along

Please tell me how will I be counted when I'm gone


It won't be by your worldy goods, it won't be by your gains

And not among possessions you bequeath

But wisdom, grace and kindness and the power of your love will be

The measure of the legacy you leave


The working day is over and the woman in her prime

Alone now in her office looks around

An unfulfilling business is the only sight she sees

The ticking of the clock, the only sound

She closes up and locks the door and trudges down the hall

Takes her window seat that evening on the train

She stares out in the darkness but the only thing she sees

The reflection of her weariness and strain

Her mind begins to wander, she remembers all the years

Of the struggle and persistence that go into such careers

And here she is with everything she'd worked so hard to win

And such an empty feeling burning deep within


Another late and lonely night, the younger man walks home

And slowly climbs the several flights of stairs

He pulls the shade and locks the door, unplugs the only phone

Puts himself to bed and says his prayers


A blessing for my aging dad, my sister in her prime

And a woman I once loved who got away

And for all the wasted moments when I took them all for granted

And for words I never had the nerve to say


Another night of drifting in and out of restless dreams

Of unborn children, marriage, and the lives that might have been

But lives that might have been are only lives that never were

And all I'll ever know's that I'll never know for sure

Here's to every aging person and to all those in their prime

And to passing on the love that you receive

For wisdom, grace and kindness and the power of that love will be

The measure of the legacy you leave

The power of your love will be

The measure of the legacy you leave


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