THANK YOU, MR. CHAPMAN


More than forty years have passed
Since a High School thespian cast

Of students in their junior year
Found me one among their peer

Group of adolescents wise
And victims we of starry eyes

First to help me meet the test
Of adult labor, wages best

Was Mr. Chapman, friend so good
Hired to help him cutting wood

This kid who'd had few jobs before
And knew not what life held in store

A few days work he offered then
To guide me to the paths of men

His cabinet work and carpentry
Donated to the Lord that we

Might see the church that stands today
In our hometown so far away

His life he spent in doing good,
And working with his hands in wood

He never knew an unkind thought,
Or deed or word, as Jesus taught

Retired at last and moved away
Into a high-rise home to stay

But still we saw him now and then
Reminders of good times again

Some of the residents felt concern
Lest this concrete structure burn

Since elevators scare them so
And stairs the alternate route below

So many elderly tenants here
Are barely mobile, live in fear

Came, alas, the dreaded day
Fire had come to take away

A portion of their peace of mind
And though it not a deadly kind,

Just in case, this kindly one
Always a Good Samaritan

Rushed to safety all he found
Swiftly down to solid ground

Although the fire was soon put out
And the danger gone, no doubt,

Strain and effort such that he
Became the only casualty

And once his friends were saved by love
He slipped away to Heaven above.

by D. Edgar Murray.