Robert L. Peters

31 October 2012

Halloween apples…

(timely political commentary by my friend Chaz Maviyane-Davies)

30 October 2012

My Dad… and poetry.

Winnipeg, Canada

We buried my Dad yesterday. Thanks to the hundreds of friends and family members who came to his farewell ceremony—a celebration of a 92-year life well lived. Thanks also to the many who have written me with kind words of condolence and shared memories.

Among the simple things that gave Dad pleasure throughout his long life was poetry. During the time of fellowship following the lunch yesterday I shared one of his favorites—a piece that expresses well his egalitarian Weltanschauung, and a piece that he would delight in reciting from memory—in that deep and spirited voice that anyone who knew Dad is sure to miss.


House by the Side of the Road

THERE are hermit souls that live withdrawn

In the place of their self-content;

There are souls like stars, that dwell apart,

In a fellow-less firmament;

There are pioneer souls that blaze the paths

Where highways never ran —

But let me live by the side of the road

And be a friend to man.

Let me live in a house by the side of the road

Where the race of men go by —

The men who are good and the men who are bad,

As good and as bad as I.

I would not sit in the scorner’s seat

Nor hurl the cynic’s ban —

Let me live in a house by the side of the road

And be a friend to man.

I see from my house by the side of the road

By the side of the highway of life,

The men who press with the ardor of hope,

The men who are faint with the strife,

But I turn not away from their smiles and tears,

Both parts of an infinite plan —

Let me live in a house by the side of the road

And be a friend to man.

I know there are brook-gladdened meadows ahead,

And mountains of wearisome height;

That the road passes on through the long afternoon

And stretches away to the night.

And still I rejoice when the travelers rejoice

And weep with the strangers that moan,

Nor live in my house by the side of the road

Like a man who dwells alone.

Let me live in my house by the side of the road,

Where the race of men go by —

They are good, they are bad, they are weak, they are strong,

Wise, foolish — so am I.

Then why should I sit in the scorner’s seat,

Or hurl the cynic’s ban?

Let me live in my house by the side of the road

And be a friend to man.

— Sam Walter Foss (1858-1911)

27 October 2012

Because you are alive, everything is possible.

Thich Nhat Hanh

25 October 2012

John Jacob Peters 1920-2012

Winnipeg, Manitoba

The send-off Celebration (aka funeral) for my Dad will be at the McIvor Mennonite Brethren Church in North Kildonan, 200 McIvor Avenue (just off Henderson Highway) on Monday, 29 October 2012.

Viewing as of 10:00 am.

Service at 11:00 am.

Lunch/reception at 12:00 noon.

Burial (in Steinbach) following…

24 October 2012

There are no foreign lands. It is the traveler only who is foreign.

—Robert Louis Stevenson

23 October 2012

If you don't care where you are, you're never lost.

I have found this to be reassuring for much of my life…

22 October 2012

It is good to have an end to journey toward; but it is the journey that matters, in the end.

—Ernest Hemingway

21 October 2012

I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help.

John Jacob Peters, 1920-2012

Early today, my Dad passed on into the next realm… he sees more clearly now than ever before in his 92 years—and he’s no longer tied down by time and place and gravity. Heartfelt thanks to the many friends around the world who have invested in prayers, provided emotional support, and expressed condolences…

(Psalm 121:1, the Bible)

16 October 2012

Some people are so afraid to die that they never begin to live.

Henry van Dyke (1852-1933)

15 October 2012

And we should consider every day lost on which we have not danced at least once. And we should call every truth false which was not accompanied by at least one laugh.

—Friedrich Nietzsche

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