On the heels of worry came the unpleasant news of Somchi as the violent sun dipped in the grey-blue sky. The prophetic scorch obscured smoke from a nearby village. Insomnia and I were the best of friends. I used to sleep best with a bible under my pillow. Hope had evaporated the dry and wary land. Violence encroached like high tide. The rice paddies were empty for days. Harvesting came no more, one grain of rice equated one bead of sweat and everyone too tired. I was tired, tired like I was a hundred years old, tired from the smell that never left.
I recall lifting my cracked hands to pray. I said to God, Did she suffer? Forgive them for they know not what they do. I can still remember thinking through the blur. The words of a wise poet were all that came to me...death comes equally to us all and makes us all equal when it comes. The more I thought about it, the more a flood of thankfulness overwhelmed me, I was so thankful that Somchi had set eternity in her heart. There was no school for grief. I remember thinking, who teaches you to cope with the death of your child? For days I walked around feeing numb and sad at the same time.
Samakhisa had so desperately tried to comfort her. The words that he had structured in his head were not forthcoming. He tried to catch her eyes but Saraya had buried her head on his shoulder. He felt a rush of thankfulness that he did not have anyone to lose. The pain seemed unbearable. She started to sing a lullaby, the one she had sung to her daughter as she nursed her, the lullaby was for her benefit.
He wondered how long would it last and when would he would free have his shoulder back? He did not have any family was because he did not know how to deal with these sort of things, less was more. Her lullaby closed and all that was left was the sound of their breathing. He stood there like an idiot, helpless to help her. She was old, so was he, they could have been an old married married couple but were not. He wanted to hold her but fear gripped him.
“They killed her before she could even assemble her story.” she said.
He stared at her blankly as if there was no heart inside of him, his eyes wide, a mute.
They sipped pearl black tea, sorrow lingered, the kind of sorrow that he had run from his whole life. Grief wrapped her like a winter coat. Winter of the heart had arrived.
The words that I wanted to share with her all sounded shallow as I structured them in my head. I tried to catch her eyes but she buried her head on my shoulder. I felt a rush of thankfulness that I did not have anyone to lose. The pain seemed unbearable. She started to sing a lullaby, the one she had sung to her daughter as she nursed her, the lullaby was for her benefit.
I wondered how long would this last? When would I be free to get my shoulder back? Her lullaby closed and all that was left was the sound of our breathing. I stood there like an idiot, helpless to help her. I wanted to hold her but fear gripped me.
“She is dead, they killed her before she could even assemble her story.”
Again I blanked, my eyes wide, mute.
We experienced deep sorrow and sipped pearl black tea, sorrow lingered, the kind of sorrow that I have spent my whole life running from. Grief wrapped her like a winter coat. I could see that winter of the heart was here, to stay for a while.
Here is the image that inspired me, tell me what's your favorite version?