Breathe in this forced pause. Breathe out the smell of death, grief and sunken family. Look around and see it’s so much less but more. Feel the hot turmoil under your skin.
Think, my brother died and say aloud, “Again.”
Such great tenderness unveiled in moments. A rush of love begins.
“You’re hurting me,” I say.
“I’m loving you.”
“But, is that the same thing?”
Everything happens in an instant. It is a black flower that blooms and roots in our heart. Some of us hold our breath while we wait. Someone chants in the corner. What are we waiting for? For tomorrow…a new dream… an awakening.
“I don’t want to be here,” I say.
“And yet, here you are.”
“What shall I do with this tragedy?”
“Love. Love hard and love living.”
I watch my family in motion. There’s a huddle and we’re a team. Someone is folding sheets. Another is shifting furniture and making space for Death to arrive and it’s strange really because we know that this guest will not stay long. They will leave us with another hole.
Things mesh and blend, emotions and exhaustion flutter. We find laughter beyond our control. All we can think is—It is time.
“Time for what exactly?”
“Time to come together.”
“Or fall apart,” I say.
My birthday card reads: “It’s time for joy.” I’m reading this while letting go of my brother’s hand and replacing it with someone else’s hand. It’s a warm, loving hand so I don’t fall. But, then in this hand I’m falling into somewhere else.
The sun burns your skin and you are alone. Turn toward the mountain and you are alone. Turn toward the sea and you are alone. Say, this being alone is me.
Watch the seagull fly high in the sky. In that flight, remember the story of a man. Think about fear and courage and making mistakes. Think about how each lesson washes over you like waves. Think about how the salt heals your feet and how to breathe.
In the afternoon, don’t think about morning. Let the past roll off your shoulder. There’s no need to hold on to every memory. Each moment should pass gently. Those we carry in a box are cumbersome and heavy. When we are in a state of love, moments come and go naturally and intensely.
Learning to be alone doesn’t mean you don’t love deeply. It means that at the moment, you have nothing more to be. It means that life can be your little secret. It means that you alone hold the key.
The tears still come; it’s tenderness and life. It’s love and compassion on your face. It’s surrender in your eyes. It’s longing and frustration. When your tears fall with someone, there is love.
When a man plays saxophone on the street, stop and love him before leaving.