Christmas, more than any other holiday in the Christian calendar, seems to spark the poetic impulse -- an impulse that began, as the Episcopal priest, professor, and poet Chad Walsh remarked some years ago, with the heavenly host and their proclamation: "Glory to God in the highest, And on earth, peace, good will to men."
Mattie Stepanek is the brilliant, wheelchair-bound Maryland boy with muscular dystrophy who has become a best-selling inspirational poet. Both he and his mother, Jeni Stepanek, suffer from rare but different forms of the disease. Exactly one year ago, Mattie almost died. But — strongly supported by his mother, who is also in a wheelchair — Mattie outlived all expectations and, not yet a teenager, he has become an amazingly mature public speaker and authority on life at the edge of death. More
A profile of a man who knows a great deal about poetry and a great deal about funerals. He is Thomas Lynch, writer and mortician, and each of his vocations enriches the other.
Read more of Bob Abernethy's interview with author and funeral director Thomas Lynch, followed by an excerpt from his book THE UNDERTAKING: LIFE STUDIES FROM THE DISMAL TRADE.