When my grandmother died, she didn't want a funeral. She did have thoughts about what we should do with her ashes.
There is no guidebook or set of rules for us to follow; there is no concrete “American” etiquette around death.
I wish I could talk to my mom about the irony that, forty years later, shelves are being ransacked and we are standing in lines to buy bread.
“My father, was alive, in me—in my reflection, in my voice, in my posture.”
On space debris and a father's remains.
Maybe, over time, the ephemera of Jack’s life will become less explosive, like a landmine whose triggering mechanism has eroded, rendering it harmless.
My heart’s deepest desire was to see my mother again, yes, but also to glimpse a portrait of normalcy that I had never known in the years of her illness.
I whisper to my great-grandmother a burden I’d like lifted, one she might take to the next world with her.
I’m stockpiling sweaters because they signify refuge, collecting them like talismans though grief cannot be avoided.