Thursday, November 19, 2009

4:00Pm, August 22nd, 2005

I remember the rain.

It feels cold and dominant on my bare skin. The air itself isn't cold but my arms are folded tightly against my chest anyway...
The sun is hiding - the sky is grey. It had been a hot and sunny summer. But not today.

There are cars and lots of people everywhere, everyone is moving. I feel like I'm floating. Floating and drowning - my dress is soaked and sticking to me. The dark blue fabric that was once coarse to the touch was now clinging to me for dear life, feeling more and more like a wetsuit.

Scratch the floating; I'm on a conveyor belt.

I reluctantly step through the crowd to stand in the inner circle. Black suits and soaked swede.
Then the rain stops all of a sudden. My eyes keep bleeding stainlessly down my face. My cousin hands me a rose while she holds an umbrella over our heads. All the grandchildren get a rose.

I remember the pastor joking about not needing holy water

Everyone laughs briefly. Then it is quiet again. At least it seems like it. Logic and rationality tell me I am hearing people sobbing but I feel like my head is in a fishbowl - everything is muffled and far away. The smoothness of the stem of the rose is contrasted only by the sharpneess of the thorns.

I can't remember if I bled or not. I can't remember saying anything. I can't remember thinking. But I do remember stepping through the wet squishy grass in open toed sandals to place that rose with the others. Over top the cross on the polished oak casket my grandmother is now decomposing in.


  1. I really like the way that you have written this piece. There is a great contrast between the details that you have given about what you remembered and the large gaps of information that you didn’t include because you don’t remember exactly what happened. This really makes the reader feel your emotions and understand how overwhelmed you were.

    I liked your play on the repeated “I remember” and “I can’t remember" because it allows the reader to be aware of what you were feeling at the funeral in the way that you have almost created a collage of memories.

    Once I had read the entire piece, I really understood why you started with “I remember the rain.” The line is so simple, but is one that you comment on throughout the entire piece with your dress being “soaked and sticking” to you and you “stepping through the wet squishy grass.”

    The piece has a really consistent tone that is indicative of your feelings.

  2. It's clear that you put a lot of time into this piece (or maybe you are just naturally able to write something good like this in a short amount of time...). I liked it because you gave us just enough clues to guess what was happening, but not enough so that I wanted to read more. All of the various elements -- the recollections that you italicized, the description, the appealing to all 5 senses -- melded together to create a cohesive post. The "scratch the floating" may have been awkward in a different context, but it works in your piece because it alerts the reader that you are having an emotional experience that is hard to describe. I thought that talking about your eyes bleeding was a really powerful metaphor that. At the end, you reveal that you are at your grandmother's funeral which makes the post make sense...all the clues that you gave led to me thinking "I knew it!!" when you revealed that you were at a funeral. Great post!