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Thursday, October 20, 2022

The Bleeding

 I guess God is in the editing business, too.

The sonnet below describes my body trying to bleed out on October 19. It's couched in literary terms because it first appeared as a comment in Tamela Hancock Murray's blog post for the Steve Laube Agency this morning, on developmental and copy editing.

I don't know what to say or think. I can't even state with certainty as I write this if I am on Earth, or in Heaven.

See, I am surrounded by love.

And yesterday the plot was changed,
a literal bloodletting 
in organs now so disarranged...
is this what's called Dev Editing?
And my grammar's diff'rent too,
words are spoken with more care,
respecting that which I've gone through;
am I still here, or am I There,
dead but called to higher days,
transition that I somehow missed
along the bleedout's paths and ways
that brought me with a happy twist
to blindly vault bright Heaven's fence,
and would I know the difference?

The Five Minute Friday prompt this week is TESTIMONY.

I don't have a testimony,
I just have what I've been through,
and I will not be a phony,
and tell the story straight for you.
I am bleeding, right inside,
and it does not want to cease,
but I have no need to hide,
'cause bubba, I'm at last at peace,
and can let the ol' world go,
while I journey on ahead,
and in my heart of hearts I know
that dying never will mean dead,
and that what you see me as gone
is me awake to Heaven's dawn.

Three minutes. Maybe that means something.

'Bye for now. Maybe I will see you in the morning.

Oh, and this... I try to counter the blood loss with strong red wine and pasta sauce.

During WW2, blood donors were advised to drink a lot of red wine, so that they might give a pint every week.

The pasta sauce is on my own hook. It's red. Deal with it.

I am fully aware that pancreatic cancer and alcohol do not, to put it mildly, go together. I'm just out of options.

Should be interesting to watch.

Music from the Alan Parsons Project, with Closer To Heaven.

Wherever I am, Sylvia's glad to be with me. She'll even bring the ice cream.



  1. I beg to differ -- "I don't have a testimony,
    I just have what I've been through" -- that is a most amazing testimony. You are a real inspiration.

    1. Grams, thanks so much for this. It doesn't FEEL like testimony, but I may not be the best judge of that.

  2. I'm so glad you are at peace, Andrew!

    1. Lisa, thank you. Peace, in this place, is unexpected, but perhaps all the sweeter for that.

  3. I'm so grateful that you share your journey, Andrew, both the ups and the downs. I think your testimony of finding peace in God, even in your suffering, is amazing.

    1. Lesley, I have always hoped that the sharing might bring someone, somewhere, a glimmer of hope in the night of cancer's terror.

      I never realized, though, that there would be far more ups, and fewer downs, than I had anticipated.

  4. I'm in favor of red wine and pasta sauce too! Good for all! Cheers. Keep yourself in that peaceful state however that makes sense for you and your wife. Love reading here always. You have a powerful testimony in all of your posts. You are leaving a legacy for those who read here.

    1. Jenn, thank you so much! Interesting thing about the peace; it was far easier to find than I could have imagined. 'Let go and let God' is way more than a bumper sticker!

  5. Hi Andrew,
    I am sorry you are hurting right now. I listened to your sad song. Then another sad song came on right after that- It is Well With My Soul ( the new version). Both were beautiful songs. I am going to try to share the link with you so you can listen to this comforting song. You are not alone. God loves you and He is with you. Are you born again Andrew? Have you ever repented of your sin, trusted in Jesus and asked Him to be your Lord and Savior? If you have you have a mansion waiting for you in heaven- a place filled with love and joy. If you died today do you know for sure that you are going to heaven? The Bible says we can know for sure. We are born once physically; we need to be born again spiritually. I am praying for you Andrew. ❤️Terri #8 FMF

    1. Terri, thank you; It Is Well With My Soul is a favourite here.

      I am indeed born again! I have no worries.

  6. Andrew, I respectfully disagree with you. You do have a testimony and you have been telling it, one post at a time. Each part reflecting the work of Jesus in your life. Praying for you!

    1. Joanne, I will gladly stand corrected and honoured. It doesn't feel like testimony, but the proof is I guess in the reading, and not the writing.

  7. Brother Andrew, you have just given the word "testimony" a definition that will likely stick with me for a lifetime: "what I've been through". Your story of what you've been through has touched the hearts of many, including me. I'm praying for you as you continue to live out the rest of your story for the glory of God. ~ Your Sister in Christ, Cindie

    1. Cindie, wow... I'm so blessed and honoured by this affirmation, and so appreciate your prayers.

  8. Ah Andrew....my heart both aches for you and yet joins your longing to be on bright shores.

    1. Annette, thank you...as I write this in the full dark of night's literal and metaphoric heart, the pain is dreadful...but the bright shores beckon.

  9. Thank you for sharing your journey. Your authentic words give me bunches of hope for when I will be called upon to make the transition. Interesting ... my father bled out at the end. He also was at peace. Thank God for good examples!

    1. Thank YOU for sharing the story of your father's passing, and for your kind affirmation.

      Bleeding out is indeed one of the easiest ways to go. Barb says I nearly went that way just after we married...had Last Rites, in fact...but while I don't remember, she says that I was at peace.

  10. I don't know if you read the responses to your comments/sonnets on our posts, so I am copying/pasting mine here as well. You are amazing, and I feel sure that when you get to Heaven not only will you be greeted with the words, "Well done!" but your crown will be crammed full of stars.

    "Thanks, Andrew, for both sonnets. I loved the one you removed as well, and saved it in the nick of time. It really touches me that you have it within you to bless each one of us with these personal poems despite what you are going through. That also is a huge testimony and inspiration."

  11. Oh Andrew, I haven't known you very long, but I do know that what you've been through IS your testimony, and it is a powerful one because you give the glory to God. Praying for you in these hard times, and raising a glass of red in tribute. Cheers, my friend!

  12. Aww, Andrew. Again, your words move me. Your just sharing what you've been through is beautiful testimony to the Lord's transformation of your heart, thoughts, and understanding. I so appreciate your poems and your raw honesty, my friend. You give me a broader perspective. I continue to pray for you and Barb daily.

    1. PS—I forgot to do this in Google. This is Jeanne. ;)

  13. Praying that God will continue to hold you fast, Andrew. (And what a blessing to have sweet Sylvia by your side right now.)