Notes, letters, scraps, two pictures, your house keys. I have arranged your things at my feet, in piles. We collected most of what we were able to sort out, and then applied the process creating a plot, establishing order from the stumbling heaps.
I lay pieces out on the wooden floor of the old house, sorting them into beginning, middle, end. This big room was quiet now- No distractions to prevent me from hearing a bit of what you once said:
Why do people keep silent about the kinder and nobler things they witness? Why is it only the hard biting story that gets shared?
You spat at the stupidity of waiting until afterward to give voice to that heart-glittering bauble tucked beneath the pile of off-cast debris. You told me that we are all misfits, cast-offs, hippies, and rednecks. Moths circling our own flames. But we are gems, too. All of us.
Your sermon: Lift the man up while he can still hear you. Do what you can blunt the edge. That was your gift -to redirect careening steps and set drifters right. Each day amounted to a succession of made-up initiatives. Don't force it. Let it be what it is. That's all.
How I want your voice to speak to me now as I pick up your pieces.
March 20, 2010