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I have been trying to reconcile how someone as young and spirited and accomplished and loved as Anna Nieboer, who brought so much life into this world, who embodied sunshine like no one else I have ever met, could have been afflicted with an illness that primarily touches people who are much older. I can take solace in knowing her radiance will never dim on our street; nor in the memories of everyone else who knew her. Of that I am sure.

To further settle my mind, though I happen not to be Christian, I have turned to this Holy Sonnet written in 1609 by John Donne:

Death, be not proud

Death, be not proud, though some have called thee
Mighty and dreadful, for thou art not so;
For those whom thou think’st thou dost overthrow
Die not, poor Death, nor yet canst thou kill me.
From rest and sleep, which but thy pictures be,
Much pleasure; then from thee much more must flow,
And soonest our best men with thee do go,
Rest of their bones, and soul’s delivery.
Thou art slave to fate, chance, kings, and desperate men,
And dost with poison, war, and sickness dwell,
And poppy or charms can make us sleep as well
And better than thy stroke; why swell’st thou then?
One short sleep past, we wake eternally
And death shall be no more; Death, thou shalt die.