Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Random Thoughts On An Early Autumn's Eve

During the fall, it must be an awful time to die.

When the earth is resting and preparing for the winter to come. A cold gray season that seems like the perfect time for parting – a time of homes and hearths and comfortably warm evenings in which to drift away.

Better yet to live to see another spring and the inevitable turn towards the summer again. To leave with the peace of knowing that the world turns on. That the grass will grow and the flowers will bloom and children will run, even if you never will again. I'd choose to believe there's some comfort in that and all.

But the fall is a time of a crinkling promise of what's yet to come. Parting then means not living to see that promise become fulfilled.

One of my teachers, a favorite who reminds me of my own gray lady of a grandmother, told me her husband had died. He'd been ill for some time, and we'd all known as she was constantly ducking out of class to hurriedly answer her phone or late to arrive from driving to the hospital and back. But whatever illness he battled finally took him over the weekend. Late Sunday, as she told me while she apologized for not having some trivial request done.

I was stunned. What I should have told her is that it didn't matter. There are more important things than coursework. And, at the moment, she was certainly dealing with one.

Instead, I only mumbled and shuffled away. Too afraid, too unsure, too surprised, and too unwilling to say anything to someone surely dealing with a lot of pain.

What else could I do?

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