If this were my last day, I would still drink my morning coffee.
I would still feed the cats (after all, life would go on…
Even if this were my last day).
If this were my last day, I would still make my bed—
Why be untidy now?
But this time I would be grateful that I had a bed,
And a pillow, and warm blankets.
If this were my last day, I would savor breakfast
Instead of gulping it absentmindedly, one eye on the clock
And the other on the weather report.
I would wear my favorite clothes that were always too good to be worn,
Including my expensive jewelry.
Even if this were my last day,
I would try to do everything on my “to do” list
Just for the satisfaction of having done it as well as possible.
(I would make sure my list included random acts of kindness)
If this were my last day I would be keenly aware
Of the procession of small miracles that made my day:
The warm wash of sunlight and birds calling to the morning,The sight of so much sky filling my eyes full to brimming,
The exaltation of good, deep breaths opening my lungs
And the taste of moisture lingering on a light wind.
I would make an effort to be consciously aware
All through the day, although at times the effort might feel
Like I was balancing a teacup on my head.
At other times I would simply stop in mid-step and be astonished
At the wonderment of ordinary moments.
Then I’d realize, that even if today weren’t my last day
This day will never come again.
And I would breathe a prayer of gratitude
For the gift of life, and life’s simple pleasures.

Marlene Stiles, 2009

Published in Poems