Sunday, April 12, 2009
Sycamores and Nasturtiums
My nephew Marshall showed off his arm muscles...
...before wheeling himself through narrow paths at the southern point of the beach...
...which led to my mother's favorite grove of sycamores surrounded by nasturtiums.
I went inside a mortuary for the first time to collect my mother's ashes and the place was even more grotesque than I'd imagined.
We don't deal with death very well in our culture. Though my mother was a member of a leftist Catholic offshoot organization that holds services in the San Luis Obispo gay and lesbian center, they weren't really part of her family's life. So we did our best to give her a decent sendoff into heaven on our own.
The death of a parent brings out some of the more extreme emotions in children, and though there was a chair throwing argument between a pair of sisters, by the time I'd arrived the four of us were doing our best to be kind and gentle with each other, which has never really been our style.
As my mother's printed obituary put it, "Pat loved many things: her children (usually) and grandchildren (always)."
She lived long enough to have a great-grandchild which for an Earth Mother must be accounted a resounding success.