On the fifty-fourth day of my brother’s passing, I look out on a morning, still, quiet. Overhead, in the distance a jet streams by in the blue. I picture people traveling from Asia getting ready to land. Sometimes I find it hard to hold in my head all the lifestyles on this planet, all those who travel and those who stay still.
A friend just spent five weeks on the island of Sardinia. She said the people there consider themselves a family, and families spend their days together. It’s hard to imagine where I live when there’s so much distance between families and ages. There, she said, you see children helping grandparents up and down steps. It’s not a duty; it is.
Families gather quietly together during the day, eat dinner around eight, and are all together in the market squares until eleven. How is it to live like that?
I don’t know but I do know we are on this earth as a family. How do we then more clearly honor and cultivate all the stages of life? As we explore the possibilities, perhaps we better understand what appears to be separation, as exchange, as we bind and unbind the passages and transformations that clasp and unclasp life and death.
I look at a rose, the grip of petals before they let go, feel the beat harvest gratitude in my chest.