Monday, October 5, 2009

reminiscent

a long rain
I make a point of ignoring anniversaries, aggressively losing track of dates and if you held a gun to my head, I wouldn’t be able to tell you exactly what day the twins died. But it’s October again and, even if I’m not really thinking of them, I can’t help knowing that it’s been something very close to three years.

It’s been a long three years and what I’ve learned is mostly what everyone already knows: the past is another country, but the future is too. One day, you’ll pack your bags, buy your ticket, climb on that westbound train. You’ll stare out the window at the scenery: forests, rivers, mountains, more rivers, and then the sea. You’ll disembark, sigh, unpack your suitcase, examine the folded clothes, the folded letters.

You’ll feel a sorrow like the thin shadow of a sorrow. You’ll miss, not what you once grieved for, but Grief herself, her cradling arms, her muffled breath and the way she once wrapped you in silence and tears.

33 comments:

Which Box said...

yes. Definitely yes.

angie said...

Beautiful and so true.

Meim said...

So today sucks for you too, huh? Hugs!

Bluebird said...

Beautiful.

Thinking of you.

Virginia said...

Yes. Beautiful, and true.

Aurelia said...

I'm sorry. I kind of feel that way about September....

Aunt Becky said...

for different things and people, yes.

Lavender Luz said...

Maybe grieving Grief is a double negative, which makes it a positive.

Or maybe not.

Abiding with you this month, as you hold both the past and the future in your mind.

niobe said...

Lavender Luz: You're exactly right. I even thought about submitting this to your Perfect Moment series, but decided that I wasn't able to say it clearly enough.

Tash said...

Agree completely.

painted maypole said...

strange but true, how we miss Grief herself.

Alexicographer said...

Beautiful post.

Thinking of you, past, present, and future.

Kristin said...

Thinking of you dear.

christina(apronstrings) said...

xoxoxo

Lindsay said...

Beautiful.
Thinking of you and yours.


xo

Eva said...

That's right, "the past is a different country; they do things differently there." I remember that from somewhere. Three years--wow.

niobe said...

Eva: That's exactly what I was thinking of.

Well, that and this:

Friar Barnadine: Thou hast committed --

Barabas: Fornication -- but that was in another country / And besides, the wench is dead.


-- Christopher Marlowe, The Jew of Malta

k@lakly said...

It's odd the things we find comforting here in db land and how we sometimes miss that which we fought so mightily to get away from.
Thinking of you and of them.
xo

Smiling said...

yup... exactly....

I can close my eyes and see so many images flying by through the train/bus/plane window. I remember the transition space often more than the arrival or departure places.

October. yeah...

3 years, what a strange amount of time. thinking of you.

Catherine W said...

Beautiful words.

Thinking of you.

Sue said...

"...Grief herself, her cradling arms, her muffled breath and the way she once wrapped you in silence and tears."

Oh, yes, Niobe. Thank you for your words. Three years seems at once an instant and forever.

Thinking of you.

missedconceptions said...

Three years in October. Yes, it is my anniversary, too.

Grief is/was comfortable for me because it was know. I was supposed to feel miserable, sad, and lethargic. I was allowed to cry and be angry.

The future is full of nothing but unknowns.

Gal aka SuperMommy said...

Beautiful, Niobe. The cradling arms of Grief herself. Just beautiful. With you a little extra this month... three years.

c. said...

Yes, Niobe. Yes.

Thinking of you.

leanne said...

I love the way you write. Evoking such powerful images and emotions.

A long three years indeed. Thinking of you and hoping...

areyoukiddingme said...

Powerful post. The comforting arms of grief - wow, very evocative.

My condolences, three years later...

Artblog said...

xxx

after iris said...

I've been thinking about this post.

It's beautiful and poignant, but I hope it isn't true. I don't want my sorrow to be a thin shadow or to grieve grief. I want to feel her absence truly and intensely. Not to feel eternally bereft, but to still feel connected to her as a real entity-that-was not as a grief cypher.

Niobe, I know this isn't about me and my grief, so please tell me to piss off if you want.

Thinking of you and feeling sad and sorry for your loss. With love.

CLC said...

"You’ll miss, not what you once grieved for, but Grief herself, her cradling arms, her muffled breath and the way she once wrapped you in silence and tears."

So true. Thinking of you and your twins.

dj said...

Can you imagine that I hardly remember the thoughts and feelings I had for you at the time, everytime I checked your diary? I look up with a different anticipation now... I embrace both ways!

red pen mama said...

6+ years out, this is so perfectly true. I've been feeling this for awhile, but this is the first time I've seen it put into words. Thank you. That raw grief wasn't easier, but definitely more pure than what I feel now, which is so much more complicated and far, far less raw.

ciao,
rpm

Jen said...

I'm not there yet; a year ago I was supposed to be counting down to my due date instead of holding a different heart below mine whilst mourning a burning loss four months old. I want both my daughters even though I know that my second daughter only lives because my first died. I admire your mastery of words; I wonder if I'll ever feel like that. I'm so glad that three years later you can look backwards as you do yet still have the ability to look ahead with some hope. I'm sorry for your losses but happy that your in a place where you can recognize the loss of grief as another loss altogether.

Phoebe said...

Beautifully said. The grief never quite goes away, does it? You just don't identify with it as much as you used to.