Want to know the truest truth?
You are never prepared for death, never ready for that call, “Have you heard the news?” You are never equipped for doctors in ugly white coats to walk into a waiting room informing you that your sister is dead— lying on a stainless steel table with three bullet holes in her head.
No. Never. Ready.
I think they should prepare you, warn you, give you a book of poetry by Maria Rilke.
Before us great Death stands Our fate held close within his quiet hands.
When with proud joy we lift Life’s red wine To drink deep of the mystic shining cup
And ecstasy through all our being leaps— Death bows his head and weeps.
I think they should present rich red wine in elegant flute glasses, brie cheese, and granny blankets stitched with patched flannel squares to keep you warm, remind you of your childhood. I think they should read to you softly from the Psalms, or hire a singer to sing- ‘Take Me To The King“ I think they should ease you into it, bring you down slowly, sweetly, whisper the life-changing words in lyrical verse.
How can they simply utter, “She is dead. She is gone. She cannot be saved” so casually, routinely? How can a heart beat one minute and stop beating the next minute? How can an existence transform that quickly?
Sometimes I can’t wrap this new reality around my brain, my ridiculous brain, my oh-so- human brain. I can only insert the pain in intervals like small drops of fire. Sometimes in my dreams, I see my sister flying thru air; her auburn hair tangled inside my hair, her breath warm against my cheek. She smells like wind and pine and spring simmering. She is smiling a large pink smile with her arms lifting and rising like wings…
And she is saying, “I’ll be waiting for you.”
——Darling, Reader, Happy Easter! I want you to know I believe in the Resurrection. I believe this is not my home. And I thank God for that. It gives me great joy knowing I’ll be united with my dear Kay one day. I visualize running to her in slow motion… hugging, kissing. I have so much to tell her!
Enjoy your families over the holiday, darlings. That’s what I’ll be doing! xxXX