Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Forever is Way Too Long

is the
perfect day

The sky
just so
clouds moving

Drops of water
on leaves
of Russian sage

Dog sitting
her chin
on crossed paws

Light streams
through branches
of locust tree

I sit
just so
at the
small table


Everything is
just like this
you would have said

(Requiem  by Abigail Gramig)

I've wanted to write about Suzanne almost every day that I've woken up since Deceber 14th.  I can't even bring myself to use a euphemism. I can't quiet my head and allow myself to face the truth. And then I tell myself, no one actually knows the truth. No one knows what happens once you're gone from this dimension. She could still be here in someway.   Right?!

And so I've avoided writing about Suzanne, because this all sounds incredibly personal and painful and really should I be sharing this here?; well, I finally realized I can barely show up here without doing it.  I want to talk about Suzanne, I want her name said once a day, I want to think of her and be able to bring her up, something she said or did or a memory of something that happened, I just want her remembered, talked about.  But more than anything, I want to talk with her. 

It's the foreverness of it all that makes my heart constrict. That makes me never want things to be totally quiet anymore. There's a movie going. Or there's music. Or both. And yet I crave it, I think about it, I wish I could quiet things down... but that's too quiet, there's too much room there to have reality set in.

I had planned on growing old with Suzanne. I could see it with clear vision. It involved family, laughter, wrinkles, grey or still dyed hair (we were forever dying our hair) and a park bench, or a porch, somewhere in Brooklyn, because we had finally accepted what we'd all resisted for years, and RK and I eventually retired there. We're telling stories to make the other one gasp! One of us is smoking, most likely. We get a phone call from my sister, K., saying she's coming to visit...

The forever part feels crazymaking.

In December, when I went to NYC for the memorial I was delirious. The service felt surreal.  I was numb.

In February, when I went back with intent, to celebrate Suzanne's life and friendship: this time, I thought, I'll punch the city in the face, then I'll kiss it straight on the mouth, then I'll scream at it and ask how it could wrong me this way.  And then I'd forgive it.  I had to.

RK, my sister and I, as well as other good friends, traveled to the very city where we all lived some of our greatest years together with Suzanne.  We would be gathering with so many more friends over the next week and reliving memories.  I really didn't know what would happen.  I'd hoped I'd keep it together, but I was also hoping to fall apart, fall down in the streets and, fall in love again.   This was our city.

I was received, I was welcomed, I was challenged and I was rewarded.
But I missed Suzanne.

After a full night of revelry, all in the name of our friend, the next day my sister and I headed out to Suzanne's home in Brooklyn.  We turned onto her block and it started to snow.  That instant.
The flakes lightly floated onto our jackets and touched our faces and the moment we arrived at her door, I turned to face my sister and
it stopped.
As instantly as it began.

It was an amazing week, incredibly high in a non-stop movement of friends and city and talk of Suzanne.  Every glass that was raised, every toast that was made, was made in her name.  These people, these NY friends of ours, they made this happen.  I walked by the buildings we lived in and the restaurants we ate at and did the cappuccino at our local joint ino, where we always saw someone we knew.  This time it was Patti Smith.
Suzanne would've loved that.


mogull said...

on this side...there are no words... just a swelled heart and a lump in my throat.
and as always
big love

Anonymous said...

me too...i just keep rereading this because I feel the same way everyday too.


Anonymous said...

.....and also me, Molly.....I always think about the tee shirt with the hearts on it that she gave you in 6th grade....and wish we'd kept it. I'd remind her of it and she'd throw back her head and laugh so hard....mom

Sally Tharpe Rowles said...

I also lost a close friend this year, & I am feeling so many of the same emotions.

charlotte said...

I'm so happy that you knew her... and so sad too. One of my best friends here in NY has the same name- first and last- and I'll always remember the way my heart stopped that day when I heard the news. Mine was spared. I'm so sorry for yours. Everything we heard about her emphasized that she was a remarkable friend and loving soul. She chose special people to love. I know why she chose you.

Lori Milnes said...

I think you are talking about the same Suzanne I was lucky to know too. She went to school with me at the New York Botanical Garden. I think about her so much - still, the unfairness of it all. What a lovely bright beautiful light that went out that day...

molly said...

Lori...the very Suzanne I'm talking about. So glad you were lucky to know her, too.

Kaari Marie said...

i think you meant patti smith...who Suzanne would have loved!