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The Dash Poem

I heard my Pastor read THE DASH POEM at a funeral recently. It was written by Linda Ellis, and I want to give her all the credit for this beautiful poem. I am sure that many people have her or read it, but it is always a great reminder to re-think of its enter meaning, and for those who have never read or heard this poem, this will be a treat for you.


Senator Bob Dole…

​American Idol Winner, David Cook…

Linda Ellis Reads The Dash…

Please enjoy The Dash poem written by Linda Ellis.  
​This poem has been enjoyed by millions around the world.  
The words have changed many lives. 
They could change yours, too…

​The Dash
by Linda Ellis copyright 1996

​I read of a man who stood to speak
at the funeral of a friend.
He referred to the dates on the tombstone
from the beginning…to the end.

He noted that first came the date of birth
and spoke the following date with tears,
but he said what mattered most of all
was the dash between those years.

For that dash represents all the time
that they spent alive on earth.
And now only those who loved them
know what that little line is worth.

For it matters not, how much we own,
the cars…the house…the cash.
What matters is how we live and love
and how we spend our dash.

So, think about this long and hard.
Are there things you’d like to change?
For you never know how much time is left
that can still be rearranged.

If we could just slow down enough
to consider what’s true and real
and always try to understand
​the way other people feel.

And be less quick to anger
and show appreciation more
and love the people in our lives
like we’ve never loved before. 

If we treat each other with respect
and more often wear a smile,
remembering that this special dash
might only last a little while.

​So, when your eulogy is being read,
with your life’s actions to rehash…
would you be proud of the things they say
about how you spent YOUR dash?

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