Early Monday morning, August 15th, one of my best friends died. I say one of my best friends because the other is her daughter, my wife. That my friend was also my mother-in-law may be involved in my struggle, but I’m not sure. Talking about her the other night, someone said many people called her mother. This is true and these folk are on several continents, but I thought her my dear friend. And, I don’t know how to fill the hole in my heart her absence leaves there.
I wish it wasn’t so. That’s for my sake. For hers, it was time. She lived a long and full life and, at 97, she died in her sleep, in her home, and in her own bed. This was what she wanted and I’m glad I helped her to achieve this small victory. The artwork above came from one of the many trips she made later in life, both at home and abroad and, I believe, express her spirit well. The words which follow are as close as I can come to expressing my love and my loss.
Who will fill the hole in my heart your whole once filled
How will I hear the world now, since your voice is stilled
Color drained from my world when your eyes last closed
Meaning mute, sans soul, misery for madness transposed
I can neither stop all the clocks nor cut off the telephones
Words cling to their sticky web, spread across time zones
Soft sentiments of comfort fall like a gentle summer rain
Striking like ice daggers, inflicting more numbness, pain
My friend, my boon companion gone, taken in your time
My life has lost your beauteous light and my spirit’s rime
Nothing hence may be the same nor follow what I willed
None will fill the hole in my heart your whole once filled