Tuesday, August 31, 2010

of the dust, dusty.

We've slipped in late, because  - remember?  - no need to get Eldest here early to lead the singing.

I'd thought to sit elsewhere  where I couldn't see how she was gone. 

But being late, chapel full - it's easier to slip up the side aisle, toward our usual bench, open and waiting.

I'm not aching with loss this first week without my Eldest.
Not even thinking about her.

Nor, though, am I thinking of matters reverential nor salvific.

The grief I'm wracked with merely horticultural. 

Utter dustbowl.

That basement better never leak again.  Those builders yea have verily killed the sweet sarcocca and Japanese so-gracefully-nodding anemone which now will grow no more - oh woe.

I try to rein in, How shallow am I really? that a few dead plants - not to mention all those once happy soil communities now bulldozed into dingy talcum powder . . . unsuccessfully.

Not just the open bench waits for us.

Middlest's friend from school in his clean brown t-shirt, looking lonely and long-limbed, saves our place.

And Sandy, adoptive auntie-by-affection to my crew, heroic single parent to her own now grown, sees us, eyebrows and smile rising as she rises from the back pew where she's been waiting, follows us up to bookend us into place.

I'm thinking both, No escape, and Okay, so maybe this is nice.  Being in place.

Settling in, Sandy and I press cheeks together, whisper, "Hello!" She reaches behind me to clasp Mid, YoungSon on the shoulder, who grin. Mid's friend nods, smiling gravely at each of us, relaxing a bit against the back of a pew no longer so empty.

And leading the singing? That feisty lady, gentle-eyed, stubborn-chinned, who borrowed bike-basketsful of books during her months of chemo.

Can't resent her, I think, for taking Eldest's place.  She beams down a welcome home, her hair growing back in crisp white curls.

On the stand Fritz refrains from noticing we're late, attentive to the speaker, but his eyes twinkle.  I bend my ear to hear the words now spoken of matters reverential and salvific.

Shallow I thinks, Hmm . . . these shoes of mine? They do look pretty good.


Lisa B. said...

Very nice--and elegant, I would say. I love ending with the shoes. I often also begin with them . . . let's not call it "shallow." Let's say, those shoes are a border between ourselves and the earth. Thereby being in connection with something deep. Okay?

Melissa said...

I love the feel of watchful community you describe here. There are some benefits to living in the same place for years, aren't there? And hurray for cute shoes!

Fresca said...

Grieving death, even of plants, and celebrating beauty, even of shoes = the opposite of shallow.

suzanne said...

Yes. Shoes of comfort. Well said.

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