Archive for May 23rd, 2011

“If an empty train in a railroad station
Calls you to its destination,
Can you choose another track?

Will I wake up from these violent dreams
With my hair as white as the morning moon?

Questions for the angels…
Who believes in angels?
I do…
Fools and pilgrims all over the world.”

~Paul Simon; Questions for the Angels

– – –

Well we didn’t all get raptured, but my Great Aunt Ellen and Andy’s parents’ dog, Barkley, did.  (I think Ellen actually passed away right around the Saturday, May 21st 6pm EST rapture time prediction made by the flabbergasted Harold Camping.)

I remember her as a gentle, smiling, strong Irish woman.  Most of my memories are amalgams… impressionistic; soft like fog.  I think she would have laughed at the ‘rapture’ coincidence.

While I knelt beside her at the wake, I prayed but I also almost smiled, imagining my Great Uncle Jack waiting for her – the two of them together and free of pain.  I’m sorry for everyone who has lost her but I am happy for her, leaving the human cage of brittle bones behind to fly away.

I don’t remember if she ever got to meet Jonah.  Maybe only once or twice – but I think I’ll ask her to be a guardian angel for him anyway.  She seemed, even in life, to be the guardian angel type.

Barkley, on the other hand, got to hang out with Jonah lots of times.  Barkley’s parents, Andy’s mom and dad, fashioned a toy for her from a tennis ball knotted in an old sock.  Andy would swing it high and far in the air and Barkley, ever eager to please, would run like the speedy black lab she was and snatch it mid-air (unless they let me throw the toy, and I’d spaz it into a tree).  Jonah loved the display of throw-and-catch, and still often asks for Barkley at random times.

  I will miss her.

I don’t have any photos of my Great Aunt Ellen, but if I did, I’d put them up too.  Photographs convey.  They can even stop time.  That’s pretty powerful.

This is a page of all my favorite photos I’ve ever taken.  I’m no photographer but I love these pictures.  And then there are the thousands I’ve taken of Boo:

I’m terrified of spiders; this was his “Halloween costume” last year.

I sucked my thumb til i was 7 or so…I loved sucking my thumb.  So does he.

Jonah adores the helium balloons my mom keeps buying him but when he’s all done with one, he just lets go and stands there, watching it lift into the sky.

He is unfazed by its loss, its disappearance.

He just wants to watch it fly.

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