Jeremy Rolfs

Jeremy Rolfs

January 28, 1970 – March 31, 1997
"Thabo Khali Khali"
PCV Lesotho 1995-1997

 

Seeds

I used to fear the wind

for I knew my soul to be

a dandelion

which Tsunami Time

could

separate

and

scatter

in an instant

 

but now, alone, as daylight dies

engulfed by growing green

 

I see the wind

I hear the wind

I feel the wind

approaching;

I welcome it.

 

I am become dispersed

 

transformed,

each section of my soul

each moment, each memory

is a seed

 

which might fly through the air

and tumble on the ground

then try to lay down roots

to someday bloom

and face the summer sun

 

perhaps my souls

can find more peace

apart

than they ever could together when crowded within me.

~Jeremy Rolfs, 1994

 

Thabo Khali Khali

“Thabo khali khali”

the village children

named you, meaning

“airplane of happiness”

when they saw you leaping

and playing and running

in the grassy fields and hills,

the comical pointy straw hat

bouncing on your back,

your thick wavy hair

falling forward, the gift

of your new native blanket

pinned round your shoulders,

your long arms wildly waving,

the blanket flapping like wings.

The older girls, shy, stood

giggling near the house,

the younger children all

shouting and pointing,

irrepressible laughter bursting

from great toothy grins

in wide-eyed dark faces,

running around

and up and down with you

in joyous exuberant circles

calling out

your new name.

 

I can picture it perfectly.

 

Oh let this image

stay with me, help me

remember you like this

when the world goes black

and I sink into bitterness

and rage thinking of all

the laughter, the joy,

the fun, the friendships,

the fulfillment of completed work,

the pleasures of the body,

the children you didn’t get to have,

the growing and loving

you didn’t get to know.

 

Then let this be enough:

A child’s voice, laughing,

Calling out of the darkness to me

Look! Thabo Khali Khali!

~Alma Rolfs

 

One of Jeremy's teachers began the Jeremy Rolfs Memorial Scholarship Fund at Middle Tennessee State University.

To contribute, contact:
PO Box 109
Murfreesboro, Tennessee, 37132

If you are a friend or family member of this volunteer and would like to contribute a picture, a story, or something different, please send an email to webmaster@fpcv.org.

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One Response to Jeremy Rolfs

  1. Teressia Ward-Zack says:

    Dear Jeremy,

    I just can’t seem to get you off my mind. For some reason I’ve been thinking about you and Heather more and more. I’m remembering how precious the two of you were together. How I never imagined my co-worker from the radio station we worked at would fall in love with the geeky guy from the television station I worked at.

    How sweetly I remember her coming up to me and asked me to introduce her to you. I remember that conversation in the hallway outside Studio B in the LRC at MTSU. Jeremy, this is Heather. Heather, this is Jeremy. She has a little crush on you.

    From that moment, y’all were inseparable. Who knew where that introduction would lead? Just a few short years later, you were engaged and we were planning a wedding. We were all so happy.

    No one knows when our time will come to say goodbye to this life. No one can say why God works the way He does. All we can do is live life like it’s the 2-minute warning and love FIERCELY!

    I’m so honored to have been a part of your life, my friend. I’m missing you both more and more. I remember you and I love you. Always.

    Thanks for being my friend.