If you are lucky, it happens like this:
You lose a parent
(and not a child)
after they lived a long life,
and as they were declining,
but without too much lingering
in the land of increasing diminishments.
It is the natural order of things.
The family gathers
and shares stories
grateful for the life that has given life
grateful for the weaving together of family
that spans generations and continents.
There is a celebration for this life well-lived.
Many attend the memorial
New perspectives emerge
as more stories are shared.
Snapshots provide fragments —
pieces of this life you never knew.
You feel the love of those around you.
Cards, calls, texts and hugs
envelope you in those foggy days of shock
and the kindness brings needed tears.
And still, there is loss.
A parent — one who’s love has been poured on you
for all of your days.
The web of security and connection has a deep tear
and needs to be rewoven.
There will be time for that, later.
in these nascent days of grief
humbled by the finality of death
and fresh with new perspectives on this life
I find myself
piecing together a new mosaic
recomposing the portrait
of my father
who was once
larger than life.