Saturday, July 24, 2010
I remember a dear poet friend, Benedict's, words on the death of my mother in 1995. The words were of little comfort then, but were so resoundingly true that I found a strange kind of peace in them despite their finality. He said, "Betty, we must remember that no life is complete without a death." At the time they didn't make sense to me, but in the days that followed; after the flowers were wilted and the mourning clothes put away -- they were strangely comforting, and right.
I would never have been ready for this death since I could hardly imagine Lottie's life ending before mine. It just isn't fair, in the scheme of things. There was so much left unspoken ... but maybe that's inevitably the way that fate has of keeping a 'presence' alive -- the essence of those who've passed on -- a way to sustain life even in death. I suppose I'll be in silent and sometimes troubling conversation with my sister for as long as I'm alive.
Photo: by E.F. Joseph of Lottie as a vibrant teenager.