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The Walls Echo


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Where there was love, the walls echo.

Where there was life, the walls echo.

Where there was laughter and tears and a good argument that ended with making up, the walls echo.

Where there were two, there is one and the walls echo.

In the noise of the day... In the stillness of the night, the walls echo.

Sound gives way to silence just as silence gives way to sound and the walls echo. 

I long for the echoes to reveal his voice and for the walls to hold his energy. Maybe I just long....

Loneliness is present and the walls echo with my broken heart. A grieving, broken heart is the price we pay for having loved deeply.

What would our future have held in these walls?

Perhaps walls filled with him holding giggling grandchildren one day... perhaps walls in which we would have grown old together... Perhaps...

I just hold a deep desire to feel the warmth of his breath, hear his voice, feel his touch, experience his heart beating. I know I cannot have what I want, what I need.

Maybe the walls must echo.  

Maybe the echoes are all a part of it.

Maybe the echoes of loneliness and grief and pain can one day echo with hope.

Grateful to have found you all.

Mary Beth

 

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Mary Beth,

That is so lovely. My Dana was among other things a poet. I am clueless when it comes to a lot of modern poetry, but your Walls Echo is true and echoes in my heart. I was so dense at times when Dana would send me something. Some, like yours, were touching, and I got them. Others just went over my head.

Dana and I were a couple 33 years ago, but my new out-ot-state job and her goals of a Master's and Doctorate kept us too far apart. We drifted, then met and married different people (the wrong person, both), and each of us had two sons. We both divorced in 2015 and just reconnected last May 2016. After she died in December, I happened to find a poem I had written to her 33 years ago. It was in a notebook I had kept from long ago with typesetting instructions. We met when we both worked for the same newspaper in Raleigh, North Carolina. 

Anyway, the poem is a disaster. I obviously never gave it to her back then. If I had found it before she passed, I would have been embarrassed, but would still have sent it to her, to show her I never, ever forgot her. I know she would have laughed, but her laughter was always delighted, never derisive. She (also an editor for years) would have shredded and red-marked it, but knowing her, would have loved the thought and effort of my attempt.

Thanks so much for sharing.

Dave

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Mary Beth,

So poignant, the powerful tale of us all...

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The walls did echo, Mary Beth.  It was an echo that was deafening to me and I had to run.  No one understood, still do not.  My family wants me back up in that beautiful place, but the street (a circle drive street)  I lived on, it only had 10 houses and I have to go from memory because each house was hid in a valley or on top of a hill and trees were all around.  Mr. Bates in the first house and his wife went to the assisted living (right before Billy left me).  She did not want to leave her home.  She died two weeks later.  The second house on that side, she had lost her husband, the next to the last house on that side, Hettie had lost Loyal a few years before.  The last house had stayed vacant for years.  It was beautiful but was built for a mother-in-law that would not move in it, so it was vacant.  An older man and woman moved into it as I was leaving.  (It was not my business to warn them or the leaser's of our house who were older). Billy's friend Bob (next door) passed away on Christmas after Billy had left in October.  The house with the mean dog that would escape his fence belonged (the dog) to an older boy who lived with his grandmother because the man of the house passed away two years ago..  The house on the end, I did not know them.  It was rented and they came and went.  A street with five widows and actually one widower out of 10 houses.  The walls echoed, the woods echoed, the sky echoed, the street itself echoed.  I could never be a large or small town undertaker, yet you know they have to be.  Lost two male classmates in the last two or three weeks.  Like Hettie told me "You have to remember our age, we are going to lose our friends."  Instinctively, I do know that, but I sure would like to forget.  I saw the ambulance come to an apartment a few buildings down often when I first moved here.  It does not come anymore.  I did not know these people.  "Ask not for whom the bell tolls, it tolls for thee" (John Donne)

My character has many flaws.  I wanted to be an RVer and never stay in one place long and develop attachments to people.  That was what Billy wanted too.  In my magical, fantastical, mystical imagination, we were going to outrun death.  It caught us just as we were fixing to leave.  (Our second foray into that magical way of life.)  I guess it was telling me you should have just kept on instead of letting family interfere.  

We are all made up in so many different ways.  I still see the funeral director's pasted on smile, even though he had just lost his wife of 66 years.  His eyes did not show his smile.

The echoes of that beautiful place were so loud I could not hear anything but "leave, fast."  So I did.

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Mary Beth, I guess we never really quit counting.  I keep a calendar for my family with their appointments.  This month, I was made to look at the date I was writing an appointment, how far from "today."  The date I was writing it was the 17th.  Oh no, Billy's been gone 20 months.  Had I not had to look, there "might" have been a moment I would forget the date.  It's hard to forget though.

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It's been years since I've counted months.  I'd rather not have the 19th of every month ruined. It's not such a bad thing to "forget to remember" once in a while.  If you catch yourself doing that, don't come down on yourself for continuing your life, it's to be desired.  The big days I doubt I'll ever forget, they just lunge out at me without any effort on my part.

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I long for the day when I don't remember on the 22nd of each month. In the beginning, it was every Tuesday... 1 week, 2 weeks, 3 weeks, and so on. then it was suddenly 20 weeks... then it went into months. I think it is a natural progression. I think the "lunges" that come on those big days will always be there. How could they not? They have woven their way into the tapestry we call our lives. Peace to you, kayc.

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“Scars have the strange power to remind us that our past is real.” ― Cormac McCarthy, All the Pretty Horses

MG, I admit those first few Saturday mornings, months of Saturday mornings at 7:30 a.m., I would see Billy's death mask.  I was not expecting it, you see, I was not going to let him die.  They had told us months.  The death certificate said colon CA.  I did not argue with it only one small polyp found.  His poor liver was taken over with CA, as were most other parts of his body.  If he felt it, he did not tell me.  It was his same, his at least 40 year old backache, so that morning this was not what I expected.  He had the aneurysm in the back of his head also.  I had had to calm his speedy heart down, and it was easy to do.  No, this was just to give him fluids.  We were going to have our miracle and when he was letting me know he had to give up I slapped his hands down, lay my head on his bed beside him and exhaustively fell asleep.  7:30, every Saturday morning.  After a month, the 7:30 gave way to the 17th of each month and finally at 20 months, only hapstance made me look at the date.  

No, I don't think it is easier.  You just realize it is not just a bad dream and you will wake up.  I still sometimes got angry at him for leaving me, then would feel guilty.  He was so laid back and calm, he would outlive us all, certainly would not leave us so fast.

My feelings now are a terrible emptiness, "hello darkness, my old friend, I've come to visit you again" (SG).  But you have to take care of business.  Still some I have not taken care of, and I might not ever.  I have boxes, lots of boxes.  Not ready yet to look into them.  When packing, I just threw them in, labeled them, stacked them.  Big plastic buckets with handles. I had to get away from that emptiness. If I move into another apartment in the city, I am ready to move.  If I am able (and I think I will be barring complications), I want a washer and dryer apartment.  I'm hoping my granddaughter sees she needs more schools and there are at least four or five located close.  I won't push her.  Has to be her idea.  So, I do have something/someone to keep me occupied.  Now if my family will let me, maybe I can put money back towards this.  See, even I have plans.  I guess I have come a long way from the doctor asking me last year what I am going to do and I said "I don't care."  

Now I have to go to that damnable washateria.

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