Faith on Friday: Heaven’s Lucent Kiss


Effie Jeanne Watkins, circa 1938
My mother, Effie Jeanne Watkins, circa 1940, age 12.

A classmate of mine from high school just sent me a beautiful card full of comforting words as I grieve my mother’s death. Inside she also shared this poem, which had been read at another classmate’s mother’s funeral in February. It was written by that classmate’s grandmother-in-law, who was Poet Laureate of Mississippi from 1973-1978. It brought healing tears to my eyes, and I hope it blesses all of you today.


To wake, completely freshened,

On Heaven’s vibrant shore—

To see the ones whom I have loved

And lost a while once more!

To leave behind me nothing

But gasping, mortal breath

To gain the life eternal—

Now would you call it—Death!

To trade the mundane sorrow

For everlasting bliss—

The pinpricks of misfortune

For Heaven’s lucent kiss—

To lay aside forever

The suffering and strife—

Now you may call the marvel Death,

Now I would call it—Life!

          Louise Moss Montgomery

         Poet Laureate of Mississippi 1973-1978

         Clarksdale, Mississippi

My mother circle 1936 or 1939... hard to read the writing on this beautiful tintype
My mother circa 1939. She was 11 years old.