When The Feathers Fall

It’s the height of summer and there’s nothing but warmth and sunlight and trees thick with green blowing in the soft breeze, here on the west coast of Canada. Everything is green. Everything is alive, and it feels like a lie.

We’ve lost so much, and still we stand. Not strong, but together. Somewhere outside the howling madness the reasons nudge their way in, explaining away the ragged holes in our family. It was for the best, they say. He didn’t want to live.

I know he didn’t want to live.

I knew when he looked at me across the kitchen table and said, broken-eyed, “I don’t want to go on, Emmy. I don’t want to go on anymore,” while his wife’s ashes took up a whole room of sorrow for themselves.

Hope is the thing with feathers, right?

What happens when the feathers fall, melting, too close to the sun? A small splash in an arcing, cosmic web of cyclical life and death. But when standing next to that splash, it’s easy to be soaked. Stand next to many, and the water soaks into your bones.

I’m aching with my mind and my heart.

I’m done with death.

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