The Smell of Memory

Work lies waiting for me on my drawing board and time slips on once again. Nothing new to show just yet. I spend the bulk of my life (like all others) working. When not designing or painting, I am plotting the next project ahead of me. I have picked up the “nasty” habit of workaholic-ness lo these past few years.

A month ago my wife’s great aunt of 91 years passed away. I had known her the second week that I began dating my wife. She declared that I was the “one”, the one God had set up for her niece, new to California via Vermont.

She was many things, a “bit off ” at times, prone to rambling and stubbornness…but she was right.. I know this now.

She had been ill sometime and succumbed after much pain and struggle in a hospice. My wife and I were grocery shopping one night, walking down the length of an aisle she clenched me and whispered her love into my ear. 15 minutes passed and we received the call.

That week was an odd one, never having been so close to death was strange. I had no real pain, nor did our family as aunt Katheryne longed to go home. Still life seemed a bit different, it seemed fleeting and ethereal, fragile.

One moment someone is with you, the next, they just go away. They are gone.

This struck me even more so as at aunt Katheryne’s burial site, as they lowered her into the ground and lay fresh earth upon her my cousin’s 1 year old sat on the grass, his new eyes taking in all around him, his attention held to the small earth mover that covered the grave.

That week I began to re-evaluate my life. a few weeks past, then a month came and went and the duties of life began to grow again. And like weeds it’s demands and obligations, it’s petty grievances and distractions began to grow thick and high.

I realized that my memory or even thought of Katheryne faded till I gave her no thought at all. Re-evaluation slowly and slyly faded away too… and i forgot. My mind went back to it’s old ways. My meditations and projects took over my time again as did my rumination on the fate of television heroes and heroines I watched every week as well as that of news and gossip on the airwaves.
My mind became busy for business sake. And the concerns and cares that nipped at me, I buried in this business.

How easy it is, how frightening it is to forget to be in the moment. And how easy it is to allow the din of business blind one from living life and taking stock of it. To be in the now, the present and not take life for granted. It is always good to be reminded of such things.

Most men lead lives of quiet desperation and go to the grave with the song still in them. – Thoreau


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