It’s a ritual of the living.
We set aside a time to remember.
First, those who have fallen
Then the others.
The people who dance in our dreams
and live in our memories.
I always wonder if all small towns in America are the same?
We begin with momma now.
She gets live flowers
and let’s face it, the prettiest.
We don’t stay long.
I don’t think she is there…
she’s too busy to linger there.
Then we go to the grandparents.
They get real flowers, too.
I only knew my grandma L
and I only have a few memories of her.
Her and grandpa get the yellow flowers –
I don’t know why,
they just do.
My cousin who died before I was born
is next to them.
She gets some artificial flowers in her vase.
We go to grandma T next.
She gets the purple flowers.
I don’t know why
she just does.
She died before I was born.
Her husband chose to be buried next to his second wife
so he gets artificial flowers.
There is an empty spot next to grandma now
that makes me a little… angry
No, too much time has passed to still be angry.
I’m just disgusted.
My dad also puts some artificial flowers on a
forgotten neglected stone.
They were friends of his family in their long forgotten coal camp.
We go to the other cemetery next
and stop at both of my mom’s grandmas.
One died when I was four.
The other died before I was born.
They were important to her though
and they featured in many of mom’s stories.
They get artificial flowers
and they always will while I’m doing it.
I leave some flowers for my piano teacher.
She believed in me
even though she probably shouldn’t have.
My dad left some flowers on his
“She had a beautiful singing voice,”
he’s told us.
She was important to him so I will carry on the tradition.
I think that’s a part of Memorial Day.
The flowers and flags are more for us.
It’s our way of sending a message –
“You are not forgotten.
Your dash on the stone matters
We will make sure you are not forgotten.
We will remember you
and share your story.”
© 2015 ck’s days