Tag Archives: death

Extract from a diary found South of here (13)

We watched you sleep,

The hand of God outstretched,

But in the end,

The sin and shame of your decay

was never yours to hold.

And when the Angel came,

You turned your face to the wall

And you left.


Extract from a diary found South of here (12) – Last Words

These are the last words that I will say to you.

Moving from room to room in the half-light of the house, dust motes caught in the slim shafts of sun slipping through the half closed curtains. I trace the tips of my fingers across old wooden shelves and glance at the photos placed before the books.

Listener’s Library beside the paisley covered high wing back rocker. Reading glasses on the dining room table, half hidden under post and papers. Dirty work shoes at the kitchen door.

Mom is crying softly in the bedroom and Dad is pacing the hall.

These are the last words that I will say to you.

The afternoon shifts westward as hands fold upon themselves, over and over and over. We close our eyes and wait for the ceiling to dissolve away, to reveal the glory of the bright white clouds above, the towering clouds we always knew were there.

In the bathroom, the tooth-brush still rests in the glass beside the toothpaste. Tubes of paste and bottles of pills in the cabinet. Silent in the gloom. I look at myself in the mirror and trace the line back into the past, beyond the foyer and front door, the oak tree and garden gate.


I hear the sound of a window being opened and in the silence, I hear the release, the breath and know the last words have been whispered.

Through the open kitchen door, I hear children playing tennis in the street.

Extract from a diary found South of here (5)

3 July

You have been gone a while now and I find myself thinking less and less of you. Sometimes I feel guilty, like I have let you down. But I understand. I understand the process. I will never forget you, for you have given me too much for me to forget you:

Salty play-dough, our charcoal drawings that you stuck up on the cupboard doors, your wood fired oven behind the laundry where we hardened our clay cups and plates, the sound of the ocean through the open window at night. Peace.

I never told you that I loved you, yet you showed me all the time. I am sorry. I wish you were here for me to tell you. I miss you. I miss knowing that you are here. Still around.

I remember driving up your steep driveway, hooting from the bottom to let you know we were arriving. I could not wait to get out of the car, to be where you were, to be where that which you offered me was. I have been fortunate to have known you. You have poured out, given more to me than I deserved. 

I have a daughter with you name. She has your joy and I pray that she has your passion. Sometimes I see your eyes in hers when she laughs and I know that you have never left. I still have you. 

Extract from diary found South of here (4)

27 June

It is cold.

This cold has crept upon us suddenly. For a while it seemed that winter had forgotten to come, but then, as we all were happy for the relative warm days, winter came as a thief in the night.

Through the open back door. And suddenly, we find that we are cold and have been for some time now, lulled into some false sense of hope by the mild temperatures. Now it is too late to do anything.

We have a carpet of yellow leaves that the wind collects and swirls across the garden, down the drive way and to our front door. It is as if they too want to come inside for heat.

A cold front came in yesterday, without you. You are warm where you are. I think of you. Not as often as I used too, but I still think of you. There is a hole now, that place where you were. I see people who remind me of you, of your space and habits.

I have them still, these memories. In that, I am fortunate, I am fortunate for having known you, for having experienced you.

The hose pipe hangs from the tree, so that it does not freeze on the frosted ground.


Extract from diary found South of here (3)

16 February

You have gone. A week ago, silently and on your own.

They say they found you, head tilted to one side and your mouth open. As if to let the spirit out, back to God.

The old man said that he watched you (your form, your shape) for a while from the door, as the carer ran to call the doctor. He then turned and shuffled back to his chair in the lounge and waited. I wonder if he cried, or if he wanted too.

Your room is empty without you. All the pictures have been taken down and the bed has been stripped of the bedding.

Now it is simply an empty space.

There is nothing there that reminds me of you, except the wax bust on the bedside table beside the window.

I wonder where you are now, what you are doing.

Do you have your healthy young body back? Are you doing the things that made you happy as a girl?