H | 22 & 3

For Harry…

I knew you briefly, almost in passing. We never once sat down to dinner or shared stories of our loved ones. We spoke on the phone once but only for a moment. We knew one another in this way for two years until suddenly, without warning, you died.

I imagined a fleeting sense of grief would envelop me and dissipate as quickly as it seized upon me. But this didn’t happen; I felt no gentle sadness upon my shoulders, nor did I feel the prideful weight of respectful sorrow. Involuntary yet irresistibly, I began to weep. My hands trembled upon my cheeks as my mind grasped for understanding.

I felt tethered to you somehow, not attached to you nor grasping for you. As I sat still weeping, clarity overtook me. I realized I had known you my entire life, and you had known me. I could suddenly recall you standing upon the shore as I clung to the rotten rafters of my ship. You had somehow found your footing, yet you hadn’t walked away. And as my invocation became sincere, the bond between us began to form, forever cementing us together…

It has been 5 years since your passing.

And now, I sit in reflection of you and the ones that came before you. You had all found the shore years before me and delivered this beautiful, unmerited gift to myself and others as we arrived upon the crests of the waves.

You are one of the waves through which the fire can boldly show itself, can instill belief in the most fragile foundation, a most connected moment.

And now, leave desire and despair for those who are still lost. I do not despair your passing – it would be a mistake. To despair would suggest that there is unfinished business, and there is none for you. Your example is alive and well, and around the waves float specks of water and dust – all hoping one day to become the wave, to become more like you.

I know where to find your voice and so do others. And I will seek out this voice; as tears roll down my cheeks and onto my hands typing these words, I will seek to follow your example. You have set beauty on the horizon; enjoy the sunshine.

Rhett B.

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