The Vicissitudes of Life
We are boats on the thrashing sea of life. We rise and fall with the waves. People react differently in their tragedies. This episode is based on the book From Dusk to Dawn: The Vicissitudes of Life By Henry Krauss
Welcome to this edition of News gram
I’m so glad you clicked on this episode because Vicissitude is not a word we use all the time but it’s a great one to describe the things that happen to us that are beyond our control. They happen all the time and we all react differently. Many times we wish we could go back and do things differently but that is never an option. The Vicissitudes of life are numerous. They can overshadow the good things that happen to us and it’s that combination that life is all about. How we cope with the ups and downs says a lot about who we are as individuals.
Today you are going to meet Henry Krauss. Among other things, he is a retired author. He’s also a pretty cool guy as you’ll see in a minute. He has a new book of poetry out that offers a message of hope and inspiration. The poems are mostly about how he coped with cancer — or I should say the emotional duress caused by it. Oh…there is a lot more here — stick with me because this is going to be worth it.
Henry was diagnosed with Multiple Myeloma, Diabetes and Polycystic kidney disease; a chronic condition that literally destroys your kidneys. There is no cure for it so he underwent a Kidney transplant and rather than letting all this get the best of him he decided to write 30 poems.
Henry Krauss – It was kind of Cathartic to write these thirty poems.
His poetry is now a book titled “From Dusk to Dawn: The Vicissitudes of Life”. Henry says, people react differently to tragedy but journaling or writing can be therapeutic because the diagnosis of a chronic condition can take an emotional toll.
Henry Krauss – An important thing out there for people to know is to get counseling or therapy from a social worker or psychologist or psychiatrist because that kind of help emotionally helps you deal with the stress and to be honest with you that’s the hardest part.
Gratitude and staying positive can actually improve your health. Can it cure cancer? I’m not going to go that far but being gracious and positive are a lot better for you than negativity. We’ve met all kinds of people here on Newsgram and a common theme is the importance of being thankful and optimistic.
Henry Krauss – My idea is to instill hope in people that just because you’re given a cancer diagnosis or chronic Kidney disease doesn’t mean your life is over.
That’s a good way to put it. No matter what is going on in our life, things happen for a reason. There is always a path through the darkness and there is always hope.
Henry Krauss – This is true in all of life because that is what the book is about/ It’s not only severe tragedies, it’s anything that comes up. You have a choice. I don’t like to say it because it’s cliche but is the glass half empty or half full?
A nice example of this is the poem he wrote called “My Cancer” . It’s not available online in the free preview section of his book so it was nice of him to read this one for us. It’s such a visual piece that I think you’re going to like this. Let’s have a listen…
Henry Krauss – Where did my energy go? I climbed mountains, ran with the wind, and climbed the Great Oak. Now it’s hard to walk. Climb steps. I need stamina. Vitality. I sit and can’t get up. Dizzy. What will rejuvenate me? My heart pumps although it feels like the blood is slowly dripping out of me. Despite the fatigue I push with grit. I’m optimistic. Tomorrow is another day.
Tomorrow is another day. When you thumb through this book you get a real sense of who Henry Krauss is and he’s definitely someone you should know. We encounter people everyday and rarely get a chance to get to know them or hear their stories. Letting Henry touch your life with his words is a good thing. If you are going through something that is bringing you down, listen to Henry. You might not be able to see it right away but one of the important keys to life is acceptance.
Henry Krauss – Acceptance of your situation in life. Now you look at people and you say well, look, that guy has a lot of money, great car, great kids, everyone has something to deal with in this life. This world makes us choose and is not a utopia. We sometimes think like children and want everything to be a birthday party. Life is not like that. The people that think that way get into trouble. Now I have a brother who is perfectly healthy and a sister too who is perfectly healthy. So, this is just how things fell out.
The book is called From Dusk to Dawn: The Vicissitudes of Life and before we wrap up today I want you to hear another poem called Uncle Al.
Henry Krauss – He had a big impression on me because he was going to go to Cooper Union school but he was drafted and unfortunately they put him on the front line. You know he wasn’t a fighter although he did the best he could, he told me. I would visit him every Sunday in the nursing home with a coffee cake. I thought that if I go to heaven, hopefully I will, that God will look at those days and that was like the best thing I ever did in my life.
I don’t get to decide these things but in my opinion, if Henry doesn’t make it to heaven, it just doesn’t exist. Here is Uncle Al. It’s a bit graphic but if uncle Al can stay positive through all this then there is hope for all of us.
Henry Krauss – Henry reads the poem Uncle Al 1:40
This life is anything but dull. We rise and fall with the waves like a boat on the ocean, which is why that is the image on the cover of his book From Dusk to Dawn: The Vicissitudes of Life. It is available online at Xlibris, Barnes and Noble and all your favorite places. And that will do it for this edition of Newsgram rom Webtalkradio.com.
I recommend listening to the full interview with Henry Krauss on the Books on Air podcast. The episode was hosted by Sloan Fremont.