Montag, 21. April 2014

In the end...

"In the end, only three things matter: how much you loved, how gently you lived, and how gracefully you let go of things not meant for you." Buddha

ca. 1960

In the end,
it comes down
to a box of photos,
your favourite rings,
(I remember you, wearing them,
when I was little)
our old kitchen table,
where you and Dad,
I imagine, had coffee,
now and then, before I was born.
(what I remember are the endless fights)

In the end,
it comes down
to going through your stuff –
all of it – through all
your drawers, cabinets,
wardrobes, closets, your
garage, your basement,
the second basement,
your cupboards – 
I never realized,
we collect –
(What is going to happen
with it, after we have left?
Is this supposed to be my lesson in impermanence?)
what to keep, what
to throw away.
(Every piece, we threw away, hurt)
To give things away
to people, who knew you,
who were happy with your stuff,
felt really good!
To hear my brother destroy
most of your cups and plates
with a hammer,                                                                                          (Nobody wanted them! 
I know!)
What does gracefully mean, anyway?
so we could discard them
easier, did not feel good at all!

But in the end,
it also comes down to this:
how much time, how much
strength, do we have,
do we need,
to deal with this?
I think, I would have needed
a full year, a full cycle of mourning,
with all your stuff still in place,
so I could sit with it, sit with you,
find out, slowly, in my time, yes, gracefully,
what to do with every single cup.
But of course, we did not have a year of strength.
In the very end, I found an old box,
with photos and papers, which
Dad had brought with him sixty
years ago, when he left his hometown,
to meet you, which he did not know yet.
It was at first about, having his own life.
I had never seen the photos before,
or the papers. He died twentyseven
years ago. You kept it the way he had left it.
You let it sit there with us,
without anybody knowing,
in the back of one of your closets.
That made me understand,
what he had meant to you.

In the end,
we all become stories,
people tell each other,
while going through our boxes,
the ones, we are packing now.

This thought made me smile.

© Susanne Becker

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