Grief and a Friend
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You had your cup of Joe and I had my cup of Oreo ice cream but sometimes we’d meet Britta at the Caribou on Zenith, even though it really was a Starbucks on some street that starts with an X. Somehow we found each other -eventually. We talked about my book and you talked about your booth and the struggles of the craft world, but you lived it out and I only talked about it - but they were good talks. We had dreams, you and I -were gonna open a artsy boutique called “Dogs and Frogs” but it would take us away from our art. Wasn’t Britta going to run it? You had the business sense and tried to teach me. I was a slow learner but am getting it now. Oh how I wished I would’ve listened but I wasn’t ready. I may just take that step soon but a sudden wall has been put up - making me drift in thoughts, not able to focus for long. Oh, I’ll walk out of it, but I can’t control it much. I think they call it grieving.
You know; you’ve had that sudden call in the middle of the night or at work and you are to go to the hospital because it might be the last time. It’s like they won at Bingo but they had to leave to get the prize and though you’re happy for them, sometimes a tear runs down your eye. Oh, you know something is missing, but you can’t put your finger on it, it’s just the strangeness that you won’t see them anymore - ever - not until your last breath. It’s not like you really got along. You tried as good as you could; you have no regrets because it takes two to tango and you had on the outfit but the music never got played. The funerals with those serious stares “I’m so sorry about your loss” The first one hundred were just like a slow motion dream, you can remember each one, but now your are up to 250 and you just want to scream “It’s okay.” but nobody would believe you because you‘re screaming. And your friends say “Just call me when you need me.” but you don’t know how to process it and you want to process it alone with the CD’s and poems and walks - just watching the wind. They tell you not to isolate and you’d go to a support group but they’re really crying and your numb. They keep saying - each one whose gone through it before - they say “Everybody grieves a different way” but sometimes people expect something else out of you.
But you moved to the rainy city and I could never really leave the Minnie Apple because I’d miss it - made me lonely the minute I‘d cross the border as if to say “your leaving home“. It wasn’t family; more like a strange longing for those rolling hills and the day trips and the color and texture of the mud and the artsy boutiques. The only place that felt like home was that old apartment between the two streets near the tip of the triangle; near enough to the lakes to walk, far enough away from the commotion. It was my little retreat but I can’t go back because of the gas stove and the rest that you know.
It’s so strange, though miles away, and not having had auditory words to say for a couple of years and hear we are both writing poetry and making artsy cards and working in an office not unlike before but alittle diffent than we thought and hoped and dreamed. But it’s not so bad is it? - that our dreams didn’t go through as we thought, those dreams are still there in a different way and now the time is right. Well, my friend, we will talk it out, for God has set something up for us to turn to each other in this time of grieving and we must go where He is pointing. I'll hold my tears until we meet up again and let them all out on your shoulders.
H. Stone © 2005
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