Forgive me, forgive me, we’re a bit slow from the line this time; March turned so very bitter, taking our beloved Polly in a slow, aching spiral that, looking back, was as abrupt as the sun disappearing from the horizon into the sea, leaving us reaching for one another in the inevitable darkness to come.
There just weren’t the words; no way to fill the emptiness left behind that wouldn’t echo hollow or fully measure true, no path without tears, only the rawness of that open wound.
Barb wears her sorrow as a greatcoat; swirling around her as she moves, settling quietly about her when she stops. I haven’t the capacity or the imagination, to feel as she feels, watching her Mother slip away, the quietness of breath in the diminishing hours, wanting so much, willing to give anything.
Others knew her, Mary Elizabeth, much better, feel her loss keener, I’m sure. I’m sure.
I am a voyeur, 46 years of touching down a moment here, a moment there. She will always remain Christmas for me; tiny figurines skating on a mirrored pond, crimson stockings above the fireplace and a great sparkling tree; she made me caramels because she’d read my stories, touched by my loss, reached into me and gave me sweets to make those memories alive again.
Hers was a kindness and warmth I’ll not see the like of again in this life.
Time passes, routine will out; it must, we can’t continue but in grief alone, Polly wouldn’t have it.
Slap her palm on the flat of the counter in exclamation she would, saying, “it’s enough, thank you, but it’s time to go.”
Left here, we can only dedicate ourselves to be as good as she believed us to be, carry on as best we can; bask in her great love for us all and preserve her memory, like fine wine, to be cherished and passed down amongst us, keeping us warm and safe from the chill.
Mary Elizabeth (Polly) Hewitt
Took wing, March, in the year
Of our Lord 2015.