Tuesday, July 6, 2010


Our childhood friend has died. My sister was there with her and her family and witnessed this most sad passing. I got the news on the way home from Eugene via Facebook of all things. I got a message that said You may like In Memory Of C___ W___. How could I like that? Four days later I visited the page and read the posts and wept. My sister told me about the service and the ladies in the church, they let her ring the bell when it was time. There was tea and tiny sandwiches with the crusts cut off. Our dead friend was cremated 126 miles from where she lived, carried there in a box built by her friends and husband. I wish that my mothers preparation had been this hands on. We have no idea how to care for the dead, it has been stripped away from us like the thin nightgown that separates life from death, here from not here. C's ashes were to be spread in the river, we did this for my mom too. A third went to Scotland, a third into the Bulkley River. I kept the final third, I wasn't ready to let all of her go. I will never forget this friend who, at almost 50 was ravaged by cancer, she will live on in that space with my mother and friends from high school who drove drunk and John Lennon. They are all out there somewhere and we must stay firmly here until it's our turn to go.


stacee said...

I'm so sorry for your loss, Rowan.

And that line is absolute perfection. Your writing inspires me to do better.

stacee said...

Sorry. I meant: "that last line is absolute perfection."

Cupcake Murphy said...

I so appreciate the way you capture the confusion/sadness/clutchyness/chaos of death here. Thanks for putting a label on it---it's so impossible to process.

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