The Gift Wrap and the Jewel

This poem written by Wanda B. Goines, age 92, appeared in Wellness magazine, October 13, 2015 in an article by Claire Peltier. Kathryn Clausnitzer Wilson, Goines’ caregiver uploaded a video of Goines reciting the poem to Facebook.

I looked in the mirror and what did I see,

But a little old lady (man) peering back at me,

With bags and sags and wrinkles,

and wispy white hair,

And I asked my reflection,

“How did you get there?”

You once were straight and vigorous and

now you’re stooped and weak,

When I tried so hard to keep you

from becoming an antique.

My reflections eyes twinkled,

and she solemnly replied,

“You’re looking at the gift wrap and not the jewel inside.

A living gem and precious, of unimagined worth.

Unique and true, the real you. The only you on earth.

The years that spoil your gift wrap with other things more cruel,

Should purify and strengthen and polish up that jewel.

So focus your attention on the inside, not the out.

On being kinder, wiser, more content, and more devout.

Then when your gift wrap’s stripped away,

your jewel will be set free

to radiate God’s glory through all eternity.”


–Wanda B. Goines, 92


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