Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Over the weekend my family climbed Mount Beacon to celebrate Maria's birthday. It was a beautiful day despite the weather. On the top, the kids had a great time as we searched for a letterbox.

Mom and I picked flowers yesterday and made this floral cake that I'll bring to the cemetery later today. As we drove down the road with sharp eyes for daisies, Mom kept wanting me to stop so she could pick flowers from front lawns. "We can't," I said. "That's someone's yard." It must have upset me because last night I dreamt Mom picked beautiful daffodils from in front of a beat-up old airstream trailer. "Look," she said. "I'm sure these just are here." As she collected a nice bouquet an old man ran out the rusted front door, screaming. He was holding a bag of manure in his arms that he kept taking handfuls out in a fist and throwing it at us. "Pick my flowers?" he yelled. "Pick my flowers!" I woke up laughing.

Birthdays are hard to get your hands around. There aren't scripted customs. I think we're on to a good start. Home made flower cakes and family hikes up mountains.
Happy Birthday Ria. We love you.

Friday, March 12, 2010

Kites in the Sky

Wednesday is the anniversary of Maria's death. Two years. How does one honor such a day? It's a question I've struggled with.

This year, kites kept flying through my mind. Kites? Yes, kites. And then I remembered Truman Capote's beautiful story, A Christmas Memory.

(This is the end of the story where he receives a letter with news his childhood friend has died.)

... A message saying so merely confirms a piece of news some secret vein had already received, severing from me an irreplaceable part of myself, letting it loose like a kite on a broken string. That is why, walking across a school campus on this particular December morning, I keep searching the sky. As if I expected to see, rather like hearts, a lost pair of kites hurrying toward heaven.

This year we're gathering at the cemetery to fill the sky with kites.

Praying for Wind...


Saturday, February 27, 2010


It wasn't easy getting up to the cemetery. They don't plow the road so we were exhausted hiking up. Henry was up to his knees. There was only one path of steps there, all to the same grave that is right up and over to the left of Ria's.

The whole time I was there, I kept hearing that Rolling Stones song with the line and I won't forget to put roses on your grave. I don't know, I think a snowman is even better.