Thursday, March 26, 2009

In Memoriam

In Memoriam
Pauline Lacroix Levesque

5/11/1930 – 3/27/2002

The waiting room is dimly lit. The plastic chairs line each wall. We are the only ones here. I select a gray plastic seat halfway down the row of chairs on the left. I pull Dad down into the chair beside me. I look at Dad, but he is staring at his feet. Neither of us speaks.

There is another door in this room to my right, but this one is closed unlike the door we came through to the left. There is light showing around the cracks between the door and the frame and it splays a small pattern on the floor of the dimly lit room. I hear voices, as though a large crowd is just the other side of the door. It’s a celebration of some kind. Music is filtering through, muffled by the walls and door. We wait.

I keep my eye trained on the door. Slowly, the door swings open and I see a silhouette framed in the entrance. The brilliance of the light blinds me, and I shield my eyes. The voices and music spill out in a great cacophony of sound that is deafening. The silhouette advances, and the door closes behind. The sound is again muffled, the light squeezing through the crevices of the door and frame.

I blink, and there is Mom. She is wearing the royal blue dress I last saw her in. We look at each other for a moment. I take Dad by the hand, rise and walk toward Mom. Mom takes Dad by the hand, but he seems not to notice, and continues to look at his feet, lost in his own grief.
“Don’t worry about me” she says. “I’m happy.”
“Good.” I reply
She holds out Dad’s hand and puts his in mine.
“You will have to take care of Dad.” she instructs me.
“I will.” I say. I seem to know she is not talking about his physical needs.
“I can’t stay” she says next.
“OK.” I reply.

She turns, and opens the door. Again I shield my eyes, and the cacophony of sound assaults my ears. The door closes, the muffled sound of celebration continues, the light squeezing through the cracks.

I open my eyes and sit up in my bed. I stay that way for a long time. My mind tells me I’ve had a powerful dream. My heart tells me I’ve had a visitation.

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