isn’t darkness, after all,
but so much light
wrapping itself around us—
as soft as feathers—
that we are instantly weary
of looking, and looking, and shut our eyes
not without amazement,
and let ourselves be carried,
as through the translucence of mica,
to the river
that is without the least dapple or shadow—
that is nothing but light—scalding, aortal light—
in which we are washed and washed
out of our bones.”
― Mary Oliver
Four years ago, today was my last day on earth with you.
It seems like yesterday that we sat all day and talked about so much.
We even talked about how we would want to die, you said you would prefer to die in your sleep rather than suffer for a long time.
Your wish was granted and the next day you went to sleep and woke up in heaven.
Memories are sometimes like shards of pain splintering and falling in waves over me.
I am taken to those dark places just so as I can feel the hurt and know I’m still alive and breathing. Holding your memory in my flesh and blood.
I know you were never meant to stay; I know that now, but on that day, I thought it would never end and we would be together until I went into my dotage.
It was a day of remembrance, a sacred day, I even forgot to hang the washing on the line. Everything seemed urgent, things needed to be said. You told me so much, you forgave me and everyone who had ever wronged you.
On looking back, I am grateful you came on this journey with me, and even if it seemed like just a stopover for you, it was really a lifetime for me.
I knew all your sorrow, and you knew mine. We both understood how much we needed to be loved and accepted, just like everyone else on this planet.
Things happen, people stray, some didn’t understand the struggle you went through.
You came here as my teacher, to show me how to forgive, to show me the very depths of what it means to never hold a grudge, I’m still learning. I haven’t perfected it yet, I’m a work in progress.
I have learned so much since you left your earth suit, you continue to show me a way out of the darkness, to reconnect me with what is truly holy.
You used to say that it’s a beautiful thing when people are honest about their hurts, their failures, their “humanness”.
Some didn’t understand you, the depths of your soul seemed strange to them.
Many called you “sentimental Stevie” because you felt things so deeply. Sometimes you even took on the pain of the lost and broken.
Your Indian friends called you Satish, which means “truthful god”, you always felt honored by that name.
You still visit many places and many people that you love, and I know they still see you,
even if it is only in the shadows…
You wrote this poem in a place called “Heartland”. It was a place where you discovered other imperfect humans living off the land and they loved and treasured you just as you were.
it was and still is a place of holy ground!
A Thousand Moonlit Nights
The deepest part of my soul lies dormant,
hidden in the shadows of a myriad of masks,
no eye has seen it and no hand can reach it,
unknown, unseen, and untouched.
Light has now reached it and air has finally found it,
my fellows have unmasked the masked man.
I stand naked in the moonlit garden,
free yet secure under an array of stars.
Dawn is coming, followed by the heat of the sun,
Do I stay or go, fight or flight?
Or rather duck and cover?
I will cover.
Maybe tomorrow night will be a full moon,
maybe more will join me in the garden.
I am on a journey of a thousand moonlit nights,
walking with a few brave souls under the stars.