Thursday, November 09, 2006

For Laura

Rummaging through a drawer full of junk I found a hand-colored card made by Laura when the kids were in the three's class. Valentine's Day. Coming across it unexpectedly made me miss her in a way that I couldn't if I'd known her better. An incomplete miss, but a miss nonetheless. And exacerbated by a sighting of the ex, this morning, in front of Scroo Cooking. The boys at St. Mel's now, him driving and dropping, but hard to shake the memory of her pajama-wearing drops and pickups at preschool. Hard to shake the memory of her disgust with her ex.

Thinking about the day that I went to her house, the way she covered Lisa with a blanket, brought her a warm mug of tea. We talked about the coldness of the bathroom floor in the morning, an old house, insulation stuffed by her to improve a situation. I think about what I might have said or done if I'd known that she was dying. I hope nothing much differently because people need to be able to get out from under the weight of death, to feel that they can be, without being too much.

About a month after she died I drove by her house, a forlorn looking assortment of toys and stuff in front. I don't know what I thought I'd see. Kids playing. Friends stopping by. Laura.

The point is that I think about her, more than I think about a lot of people. I think about what's gone, and I think about what's still here. Her clothes, being photographed to sell on ebay. Her house, empty, but not entirely. Her boys. Her essence. It's her essence that interests me. The surreal way that a person stays in the world, even after they are gone. Why some people matter more than others. How to keep. And how to let go.

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