Each of us comes into this world to one mother and one father. They in turn give each of us a set of grandparents. In our DNA we carry genes from each of them as well as effects of traumas they have endured. There are no owner’s manuals telling us how to raise the children, only the wisdom of the earlier generations. We are programmed at birth with a specific time frame and those elders to guide us in our journey through the trials and tribulations, joys and sorrows we are issued. As each in turn depart this dimension, the time for sharing ends.
My cousin Theresa delivered her father’s eulogy to many of the same people who celebrated her wedding almost thirteen years earlier. The priest who performed the marriage presented the memorial service and one of her dear opera friends sang a beautiful hymn. Being among this family and friends group united in grieving gave me the feeling of having traveled in one of the series of circles I feel we walk in through the days and years of our lives.
The question arises,
one circle seems complete,
but is it the only circle?
Or are there several circles –
do we follow one, then another,
as if life leads us onward toward completion.
When the past rises again in the present,
a little older, maybe wiser, does
it bid us come follow again?
The slightly askance come hither look
loosens some long locked door.
The hinges are rusty, the frame is
hardly noticeable for the weeds all around.
The door is ajar but one cannot see the path it leads to.
Open the door further, chance
disappointment, or quietly pull the door closed,
turn away for always?