Saturday, January 03, 2009

Into each life...

Its raining again - seems that it is always raining these days. Better that than the heat. Heat pounds the concrete, reflects off all of the steel and glass that make up the walls of our urban jungle. The heat turns normally mild mannered old ladies into angry, cane waving lunatics. It sends waves of shimmering light up from the blacktop, cooking the brains of already angry young men, sending them out to fight and die each day. You really notice it on the freeway. If you don’t have a/c, your car fries, especially if you get caught in traffic. Especially if you are an old man with a bad heart, and a stubborn streak a mile wide, stuck in traffic on the wrong day, in the wrong place and at the wrong time.

But it seems like its always raining.

The coffin is sitting on the racks, ready to be lowered down into the earth. The raindrops have taken that ebony sheen to a mirror polish, and I can make out the faces of my mother and my brothers beside me, faces distorted by the runnels of water. Mom’s being strong, that’s just what she does. I’ve never seen her cry. Not in twenty seven years. I’ve seen her shudder when she consoled our aunts and uncles when grandma and grandpa died in that storm. I’ve seen her wince when she bumped her broken arm against the wall trying to dodge our old cat Scamps. I even saw her take a deep breath and stare off into space when the police asked us to come down to the morgue and identify the body. But I’ve never seen her cry.

David on the other hand is crying like an infant. He may as well not be under the umbrella at all, with the tears and snot running down his face, he’d be soaked even if we were having this ceremony in the Mojave. But that’s just him. He’s always worn his emotions on his sleeve. He’s always the first one to want to talk about feelings, or to share things. I suppose his patients like that. No doubt, when we leave here, we’ll have to share how today has impacted upon all of us, talk about how much we are going to miss him – all that crap.

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