Monday, 12.07: 

Dinner at Subway after being at the house all day (the workers). I need to get back to the house b/c S is coming by around 7 to pick up some things that Mom needs.

We went to S’s recital yesterday afternoon. As usual, I felt like not going at the last minute, but I’m glad I went. Dinner with S and Mom after at the steak house (beautiful waiter–Anthony–black beard–I couldn’t stop watching him).

Discordia | The kind of dream that felt so real

Went to bed early, around 6:30, and set my alarm for three hours. Then went to sleep again, holding R’s medicine bear. And dreamed of him, the kind of dream that felt so real I knew it was him, at first just his hand touching my hair, then stroking my head. I was sitting in a truck in Houston, watching the front of our old house on Fairbanks being renovated. Then he was snuggling up beside me, touching me, and I knew that Houston was the dream, and we talked, so glad to have the chance to be together and not angry or sad, just touching and talking. He had been so sad, he said, and I understood. And I don’t remember what else he said but I woke with a feeling of great peace. I am so grateful for this.

Monday, 12.21: 

Off today. Rain woke me during the night. Vivid dreams I can’t remember–R has been there a lot, and I wish I could better recall at least a few details, but nothing again today except knowing he was present and that there is something I need to do.

This morning’s card: Knight of Cups. Appropriate for the day we took his remains to the forest. The water imagery, the knight bearing the chalice emblazoned with a heart. Thinking suddenly of Carly Simon’s lyric, But I will wait for you forever/ like a river. 

With all evidence gone
Thinking about Philip F Clark’s FB post of five hours ago: Loss is simply a matter of packing well. At first I thought, oh, this bears pondering. Then I thought, what nonsense, we can’t carry what we’ve lost. Then, of course, the realization that we do precisely this. And I thought of nesting dolls: each person carrying another person inside, or a collection of these persons, these dolls. Like eggs. I found another mantis case on Saturday while cutting a few branches from the huge overgrown yew (Mom wanted greenery in the house). It’s the second mantis case I’ve notice this winter; the first is on the small forsythia next to the (remains of the) rock garden. I don’t know why I am so drawn to these, why it’s so hard to believe anything could survive the winter in such a flimsy craft. But mantids do. Seeds do. Memories, some packed tightly, some turning up suddenly and unexpectedly like stray threads, seeds stuck to one’s coat after crossing a difficult, unkept field. But when the carrier, the bearer herself, goes? Seeds can wait for centuries. I can’t help thinking of viruses as a model: to survive within another, the memory must be passed on to another. When the oak dies, so dies the mistletoe.
Thinking about the ways we encapsulate memory within. It’s like we’re packaging the loss, the memory (is this what Philip means by “packing well”?)—then we pass along the bits—thinking now of baking—eat & remember. Kaleidoscopic, this tumble of metaphor, each apt in its way, structured like a sonnet crown? Loss as gift. Loss as travel. Loss as parasite (or epiphyte), seed, infection. A wrapped bundle. Loss as weather.
When I planted the ginkgo tree at Mom’s, one of the five I’d grown from seed, I imagined the tree as a carrier of place (Lewisburg): so transplantation became translocation, transference. In my little “yearbook” from fifth grade, lost long ago, my teacher, Arnold D Roberts, wrote In this corner I claim a spot/ to ask you to forget me not. I haven’t. But to whom shall I pass this moment? With all evidence gone, I am its living host.
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