I recently went to a funeral. It was my roommate in college’s dad. He was very good to me in college, in fact he was good to all of us. He had a generous heart and made everyone he met feel at home.
I have been thinking about my friend, trying to find the right words to write on her bereavement card. The card is sitting in my journal. I’ll get to it when the time is right. The important thing is I went to the funeral. I flew up to Boston.
I don’t like death. I have lost both my parents. My father when I was 30 and my mother when I was 38. I wrote this poem over ten years ago and stumbled upon it tonight. I thought it was fitting to share.
Maybe someday I’ll get
Maybe someday I
won’t be so sad
Your death seems loud
like too many sounds
like a desert in a hole
I’ll just be proud
that you were my father long
Thirty years forever gone
There is another poem on the page before in my The Poet’s Notebook Journal dated 5/4/05, which would have been about a year and half after he died. My dad died November 23, 2003.
I look at the woman’s (Elizabeth is her name, ironically the same as my mother’s) hands sitting next to me. Suddenly, my eyes are filled with tears. It is heavy, fast — how they fill. I think of my mother’s hands. I see my mother’s hands: her wrinkles, blue veins.
Elizabeth’s sunken patches of skin embrace me, almost strangle me with emotion. It takes me several minutes to collect myself. I’m almost ready to excuse myself from the meeting because of the hot tears.
I calm down as I write, sure not to look at her hands anytime soon.
* I wrote that in my journal two years ago. I was cleaning out a closet, procrastinating studying. I have been studying and preparing for a huge presentation/training I am doing. I thought that was a poignant journal entry and well-written if I say so myself. OK — back to procrastinating and organizing my closet.
Please click on the essay. I get paid by the unique visitors. So please share. It may be too sad for some to read (grief trigger warning), but it’s one of my best pieces of writing. It’s also the story about my mom dying. She literally died on the phone with me. I think most of you know that as she passed on Christmas Eve two years ago. I even was a Debbie Downer and posted it on Facebook when she died (sorry, my mom dying trumps Santa pix).
Check out Mamalode — “America’s best parenting magazine” — Lisa Stone, CEO of BlogHer, while you are on the site (after you read my essay of course). Talk about audience. It’s an authentic magazine about motherhood. Heck, they are sending a wooden minivan (yes, a real one) around Missoula, Montana and asking moms and dads to write down things they want to let go of and they are going to light it on fire. I wish I could attend that bonfire. All non-Missoula folks can email their shit in. I plan on it. I am letting go of guilt and shame this year (and trying to let go of unrealistic expectations, although those really work for me and help me be an over-achiever but it really doesn’t work for me so good).
Click and share and get some Kleenex if not for Betty leaving this world in a blaze of Christian glory. Just so you know, she was tight with Jesus. She saw him twice in her life. And Betty was never one to exaggerate. She was one to tell someone off; she just didn’t lie. She saw Jesus once when she was a little girl and once when she was “so depressed I couldn’t walk across the floor to pick up a toothpick,” in her own words. She had just had her 12th miscarriage with her first husband. So my sister and I are here miracles.
So, before this ends up a chapter and YOU are exhausted from just reading the update, click and share.