Zoe on the wind,
tickles your chin, and whispers across the water,
making cat paws on the golden surface
as she goes.
She carries butterflies and robins by day,
moths and owls by night.
She rustles through the fine fur of smallest mice,
sends pollen of spring trees bursting,
waves the bright waft of hyacinth like a flag,
a smell of Easter.
. . .
No longer grappling,
wild and free all around you.
The universe sighs and settles.
. . .
Grains of her being graced your body
since before even your birth, this baby,
burning bright as the fever of sunrise.
You were not given an easy gift,
to launch this lofty life.
Grief in proportion to love is an unfair equation at best,
the burden with which you were blessed.
. . .
In the grace of a tulip, she is present.
In the thunder of the ocean, in the veins of a leaf.
She will inspire song, sculpture, dance– for it is what we search–
the peace of where she is.
. . .
Zoe on the wind, rustles the leaves of early trees;
she is light creeping up their trunks.
She is a bee, carrying a fleck of nectar back to a hive
that is alive with buzzing sweetness.
Today, it is an honor today to share with you about Zoe, as I did last year, on April first. Zoe Faye Young was born to loving and devoted parents, Laura and Zeppo, in October 2011. She died of a rare and vicious cancer which strikes the youngest of babies and children, called Malignant Rhabdoid Tumor (MRT), only five months later on April 1, 2012.
In those five months, Zoe touched hundreds of lives.
She changed mine, even though I never met her.
Laura kept a blog about Zoe’s life and brave fight with cancer. Through this blog I learned of Zoe and her amazing life and family. I was inspired by their story, by their courage, openness, and vulnerability. They inspired me to not only hold my own children closer, but to also pay closer attention to what was going on in the world around me. They made me aware of a suffering I previously could never have imagined, and challenged me to not look away, as I had previously would have.
Rather than allow the death of their first daughter to crush them, Laura and Zeppo founded the Zoe Faye Foundation– a cause entirely focused on supporting families who are dealing with the cancer that took their baby. They allowed me to be a part of their mission, and I’ve had the privilege of doing my small part to volunteer for fundraisers, drum up awareness, etc.
My title promised a poem and a plea. So, you read the poem above. Now comes the plea to my Momaste community: Today, please take a moment to go to their website and learn a little more about Zoe’s life and her parents’ goals. If you are able, consider donating to their foundation, or helping another charity dedicated to researching cures for this awful disease. Consider sharing their website on your own blog or Facebook newsfeed to further spread the story of wee Zoe.