Monday, February 11, 2008

On wings of love

A sunny day. A day to awaken with joy lifting my heart and filling my spirit with love.

A day to live.

But then, everyday is a day to live. Is there ever a good day to die?

Death entered my mind this morning. Not the soulful, sorrow-filled, sorrow-laden kind of loss-filled death of someone we love. But rather, the night has died upon the morning, death has lead to rebirth today, let's awaken at get to singing a song of joy kind of morning.

Yesterday, while emptying a box, I found a dragonfly's body. Perfectly preserved. Transparent wings forever stilled by death's untimely arrival. There was no good time to die for this creature. It landed in a light fixture and was stilled forever more. When C.C. removed the fixture to replace the bulb, the delicate carcass fell onto the box below where it awaited my uncovering of its memory.

I wondered about this tiny winged creature's passage through time. How long did it stay on this earth? What did it bear witness to on its journey?

Secrets die when wings are stilled.

My father died a silent death 13 years ago this March. He never spoke again after the pain that struck him down stilled his fiercely beating heart. He was conscious for those final two days of his life, but silent.

We gathered around his bedside, my mother, sisters, and brother. We gathered round and told stories, sang songs and cried. His was the passing of a man whose voice could only be silenced by death.

My father was loquacious, but I knew very little about him. He seldom spoke of his life, only of those things that interested him. He had many opinions and was fond of sharing them. He was not fond of sharing his past.

Birth and death. Part of the same continuum. Bookends for life.

We share ourselves, we share our thoughts, our feelings, our dreams, our hopes. We share in the hope of finding someone who shares a similar view looking out through an open heart at a landscape filled with wildflowers whispering in the breeze and delicate winged creatures flitting in the sunlight.

The body of a tiny, delicate dragonfly landed in a box and awoke my mind to the fragility of life.

No matter if we believe in reincarnation or that this is our one kick at the can, while we live this life, it is up to us to make it the most wild, precious and passionate journey we will ever take.

In life, my father had a heavy hand, a loud voice and a hearty laugh. In life, he loved to bake, to share his edible delights with others. He loved to entertain, to sit at the head of the table and pass judgement on a host of subjects and people he often found wanting of better attitudes. He was a poet, a writer, a troubled man. In passing, it is only the love that remains. It is what brought him into this world, it is what he carried with him as he left, it is all that he can leave behind.

Like a dragon fly whose gossamer wings have been forever stilled, we must tread lightly and leave our footprints delicately embossed, as light as air, upon the hearts of those we love.

The question is: How delicate are the wings of your love?

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