Sometimes in this business you need to step aside and let someone else make a point or two. That thought hit me this week when I debated writing a column about John T. Henderson Jr., the Princeton real estate broker who died June 22 at the age of 75.

While U.S. 1’s editorial department is focused this week on guys getting seaweed wraps and back waxes, some of us “guys” are thinking about other, more serious health issues. And guys like John Henderson, and Henry Hill, the lawyer who died at the age of 65, and J.D. Reed, the writer who died of a heart attack at the age of 64, are making us think even more seriously about our time on earth and how much — or how little — we (age 58, in this instance) have left.

Before Henderson went into real estate he was a radio scriptwriter and an ad man with several large agencies in New York. He built his business in Princeton partly on the strength of consistently informative and entertaining print ads. Whether you could afford a Henderson listing or not, you always read the ad, just to see what they had to say about the house.

When some friends came back from the Henderson funeral this Monday they carried with them the program, and a poem printed on the back cover, attributed as follows: “Thoughts John left for us . . . (found in his attache case).”

So we will step aside and let John Henderson have the final word on health, wellness, and beyond:

Here I was! But away I went!

Angel pushed or devil sent!

Yesterday was time to know

Today too late to change the throw!

But please, oh God, twas all well meant

Good and bad so dearly spent!

The good wife for solace from every blow

Four children — three boys to show

A daughter best of all to grow!

Braces and sports and dances to go. . .

Here I was! But away I went!

The world is wonderful . . . yet scary!

Much to love . . . both, sad and merry.

Too short, tho’ long. Dark and light.

You try the path that leads to the right.

But it matters not, at the end of the fight.

Because God already has the finish line in sight!

And so I am on my way!

Where I go, I cannot say!

One thing for sure, without a doubt,

Both good and bad have had it out!

I wave my hand and bid farewell

It all begins today! I’ll tell!

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