I Miss My Friend

I miss my friend.

As my brain struggles with not struggling against the reality that my friend is dead…that he has fled to a place, a realm beyond, which my my five senses can reach…..Beyond the touch of his cheek as he always kissed both sides, the smell of his good cologne, seeing his eyes light up in the special way  when i entered the room, as he said in his heavily accented  ” Ahhhh Loren…comment ca va?”

I miss my friend.

I miss him in a way that is both distant and absolute. For even now I have begun to forget his suffering. The profound changes in his body in those final weeks, days and hours, replacing itself with images of the former man, tall and stately, arrogant and holding court, lording over us mere mortals with his singular knowledge of art and poetry and politics and the world.

I miss my friend.

The world should stop when someone we love dies. The trees should stop growing, the sky should darken, the waves stop breaking on the shore at least  for a few minutes. One minute. Is that too much to ask? Something should…… happen. Things should shut down and stop to mark the hour of their passing like clocks or trains or laughter or email. Why don’t we keen anymore? Or wail in public? Or wear black for a year? Or rip our cuffs or shave our heads? Or at least stand on the back porch and howl like a mad dog, a mad feral dog until our belly ache of loss, our mortal protest has been heard by man and God!  I want to do something, scream something, pound my fists on the earth.,,,the dirt where now he lays in wait of time’s quiet decay. Instead, I go to work and scramble eggs and wash my car and eat and breathe and laugh. Worst of all, I still dare to laugh. We go on almost immediately. We go on halfheartedly and distractedly for a while….but, we go on.

I know that there is a loss that can cripple me past care, beyond repair, the loss in my   silent fears, and waking nightmares.  Yet, I suspect that even then the goddamned world will keep on going… like a mid-summer drunk passed out  in Time Square, the world will walk around, step over, blow past my wretched wreaking  body felled and soiled  by  grief beyond bearing. This is not that kind of grief. This is a draining waning grief.

I miss my friend.

I think Life goes on because maybe death isn’t real. I think it is Life’s greatest sleight of hand. I think we just swap forms. We trade substance for spirit and keep on going. I almost wish it were more real to me. Real enough to warrant the beating of breasts and gnashing of teeth. Instead I go about my day making dinner, reading scripts, meeting trains, wiping noses, the  life in front of me,  relentless and unforgiving. I am addicted to it, this Life….my life.

Yet….. in the midst of cooking or sweeping or tying my shoe  or painting or rushing or skip counting by two, a memory breaks through so vivid and true. A feeling of him so strong it catches my breath, seizing my gut, suffusing my heart in  heartbreaking loss. The tears come, breaking past my resolve whether heaving in my chest or quietly staining my shirt, whichever it is – this grief goes hand in hand with the overwhelming  love I had for my friend. I mourn him because I loved him. And this love, which equals the loss, is evidence that I am alive. I am this Life that just keeps on going – not for us but for its own sake. We just get to step in and ride it’s wake for a moment.Buddha

My sweetest love and prayers to his amazing wife and children. Safe journey Home my old friend. We’ll miss you.

To live Lovely is to die without regret. That’s as good as it gets.

6 Comments
  1. Beaitiful! I have been so immersed in my grief for a time, I stopped living. This physical life we are blessed with is meant to be lived. Thank you.

  2. Having lost my mother, my mentor and lifelong friend last month, your blog deeply touched me. It brought tears ever simmering below the surface, ready to flow at the drop of a hat. I miss my mom. I miss my mom! Then I realize my loss is somewhat selfish in that with her death, she regained herself as she hasn’t been in years.

    No longer will she yearn for her husband and sons who went on before her. No longer will she miss her zany, funny sister who was older than she but was much more fragile, whom she protected with all her might for all her life. No longer will she suffer with diminished mental faculties. Confused, lost, angry and so afraid of what was happening to her and no longer having any control. When she lost the ability to keep her dog with her, that’s when the light went out in her eyes. He was the love of her life and her reason to get up every day.

    Now I have Skipper and am so happy to have a part of her to hold and hug when I need to feel my mom. He and my great grandson are in love with each other and that makes me smile. They were both her favorite living creatures on earth and they we living together with me. I find that fact comforting and lovely beyond compare. When you look past your loss to see what they gaining in death it makes their passing bearable.

    Hugs and much love for sharing with us.

  3. I have no idea why I went searching for this, but I did and I just wept
    and then I showered
    I dressed
    and Im heading out the door to work
    thank you darling
    cch

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