Death be not proud

I have just finished reading a phenomenal book called ‘The Red Tent’ by Anita Diamant. There is one thing that we all fear and cannot change and that is death. After reading this excerpt, not only do I feel more comfortable with facing my own death, but have had my beliefs reaffirmed. We live in death as we do in life….through others we love’s thoughts, dreams, memories and words. So for all of those who have lost someone dear to them, read on and know that they are always with you, as will you always be with others…..

‘I died but I did not leave them. Benia sat beside me, and I stayed in his eye and in his heart. For weeks and months and years, my face lived in the garden, my scent clung to the sheets. For as long as he lived, I walked with him by day and lay down with him at night.

When his eyes closed for the last time, I thought perhaps I would finally leave the world. But even then, I lingered. Shif-re sang the song I taught her and Kiya moved with my motions. Joseph thought of me when his daughter was born. Gera named her baby Dinah. Re-mose’s children bore children unto the hundredth generation. Some of them live in the land of my birth and some in the cold and windy places that Werenro described by the light of my mothers’ fire.

There is no magic to immortality.

In Egypt, I loved the perfume of the lotus. A flower would bloom in the pool at dawn, filling the entire garden with a blue mask so powerful it seemed that even the fish and ducks would swoon. By night, the flower might wither but the perfume lasted. Fainter and fainter, but never quite gone. Even many days later, the lotus remained in the garden. Months would pass and a bee would alight near the spot where the lotus had blossomed, and its essence was released again, momentary but undeniable.

Egypt loved the lotus because it never dies. It is the same for people who are loved. Thus can something as insignificant as a name – two syllables, one high, one sweet – summon up the innumerable smiles and tears, sighs and dreams of a human life.

If you sit on the bank of a river, you see only a small part of its surface. And yet, the water before your eyes is proof of unknowable depths. My heart brims with thanks for the kindness you have shown me by sitting on the bank of this river, by visiting the echoes of my name.

Blessings on your eyes and on your children. Blessings on the ground beneath you. Wherever you walk, I go with you.’

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