Sunday, May 23, 2010

Dear Danielle,

You were always moving away from us...into the ether, along a pale horizon that shimmered with your want. That want, more than anything, populated your world with ghosts. I know that for you, there was no reprieve from the hurting, and I think that for you it was brave to have stayed as long as you did, here, bound by this heavy flesh, these tiresome bones.

Like an iridescent little exposed nerve, a dandelion gone to seed, you wavered in the too bright air, trembling. Your sense of beauty, ever refined and exquisite, spoke itself in your art, though we could not convince you that what you generated was truly art. It was too messy, you thought. Who ever gave you the idea that art was tidy, angel? Who ever?

No matter. Your skin carried in it the moonlight, and in your languishing eyes, we could always see ourselves. What we did not know and could not fathom were the distances between joys for you. How the suffering we saw there was ceaseless, and even your love was tempered with its bitterness. We could not see that you couldn't begin to receive our love in a way that meant wholeness. Validation. Real connection that soothes what aches in our trembling hearts.

I am too old to accept blame in the way I might have fifteen years ago, and yet there is the small wound of carelessness...perhaps if I had...maybe if I...but no. They were our efforts, our love, that carried you this far, and for that I know you are grateful. And now, released into the ether, you are star-like, beautiful--in all the ways you wanted to be on earth (and indeed were to those of us who love you). What I know is this: in this new and bodiless shape, it will be possible for you to love your self, and for this it is I who am grateful.

I envision you with butterfly wings. They are iridescent, gossamer, and their movement whispers all the blessings that you were never able to claim as your this life and without them. I call you Nereid and wish to have you back, if only for a moment, to see your expression as you receive the epithet. Oh. There was love. And though I cannot conceive of it, though it pains me to think on it, somehow I know that none of it was wasted.

"You are perfect," I told you that night--what was it? Two months ago? Five years? It was an echo of a thing I have said so many times before. Perhaps even to you in those early days of your adolescence. "Not in your word or in your deed--for whose can be?--but in your intention. Perfect." That counts for something, darling, and though I do not know what, I know you know this already and laugh at the way that you have already transcended my earthly wisdom. How every syllable I issue, even now, is for my own benefit, my own healing. Such is the limitation of the "mortal coil"!

Remember Hamlet, my love? Yes and yes. Good bye for now, sweet angel. "And flights of angels sing thee to thy rest. Sleep dwell upon thine eyes and peace in thy breast." We will meet the ether.

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