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I recently attended a memorial service for my aunt, who has spent the last nine months in some state of ‘coming home’ – from Salt Lake City to Tennessee. It was a wonderful time for sharing stories and memories. And while we might have shared some of them back in March, I found an advantage in the delay – memories and stories unencumbered by the immediate weight of grief.

For me, it meant I could share funny stories without breaking down, speak without a catch in my voice. In response to one story of my uncle’s driving, I noticed at least ten people actually in tears from laughing so hard. My aunt would have loved it!!!!

The minister whispered to me afterward, “I’m growing quite fond of these delayed events.” Maybe it’s the storyteller in me, but I believe it’s because they come at a time when memories aren’t part of what breaks us, but rather part of what is saving us. Perhaps it’s another lesson in perspective, viewing truths through a more compassionate eye.

Personally, I think we could use a bit more of that.

when blue
my ashes fall
on meadows far from here
or drift atop a wave
deep and grey
remember me
another time –
as a wind I came
to you
whispers of forever
given you to save

. . .