This morning I sat in your office chair and looked out your window at the orb lighting you made from wine barrel rings, in the background hangs the family vineyard sign. I know this view made you happy as you accomplished your office work in the mornings. I took deep breaths trying to find your fragrance and ran my fingers over your desk and keyboard trying to find your fingers, then wept over your office notes all written in capitals.
The purple roses are blooming outside your window, I borrowed your pliers so I could bring them in. I consider each bloom before I cut it- is it too early? Would another day allow it to open to perfection? Or would another day find it spent? Am I taking too many? The bees and the butterflies need them too. I take two, one for me, one for you.
Then I turned and beheld the fruit laden branch our daughter told me had fallen last night.
We pruned that tree last year trying to give it the best chance of being healthy.
We understood the metaphor of pruning, cutting away the unnecessary in order to be healthy and fruitful. Painful but needed.
I wept tears in the early spring as that branch, in full bloom, was covered in late snow.
We didn’t expect it to have any fruit- bees don’t eat ice. And yet, just a few two months later…..
Your father had thinned the miracle fruit from that branch just after we said goodbye to you.
Even still, it became too heavy, but we didn’t notice. It’s hard to see the abundance of fruit through tears.
It’s hard to even hope for fruit in grief.
This miracle fruit is just days away from being ripe, separated from the tree.
I picked up the branch, trimmed everything but the fruit from it and placed it in a pitcher of water next to the kitchen sink, sunlight streaming in through the window.
I don’t know what will happen.
I don’t know if the branch can bring the needed water to the fruit until it has a chance to ripen. But I had to try. All I know is we each did all we could.
Looking at the kitchen faucet makes me cry.
I said thank you when you replaced the one that leaked.
And I was so grateful.
But I didn’t say thank you every day.
I just turned it on and off and went on my way.
Cooking, cleaning, drinking from that faucet.
Clean running water.
From our well.
And I can’t turn off the faucet that fills my eyes with tears,
I didn’t say thank you enough.
written August 18,2020