Thursday, March 3, 2011

the death of black

dear emily,

i sang at a funeral for a lovely young woman, and my heart was
broken not just for the devastated family but also for the frail
and hopeless young mourners.  they were slung upon the walls
of the reception area like lifeless tree branches.  their shadowed
eyes were opened in starving hollows.

they were watching us, the middle aged disappointments, and i
could almost hear their accusations. "why are you all acting as
if everything is ok?  where is the adult who can tell us why this
had to happen??   which one of you is going to make us feel

two distinct suffering cultures.  one in black business suits and
black dresses, the other in skinny black jeans and black spiked
hair.  separated as surely as the east is from the west.

but then i found one familiar young face, and as i approached i
saw her beneath her costume.  as she saw me beneath mine, her
sweet face crumpled, and i held her close.


ps.  "but we know that when we see Him, we shall be like
Him, for we shall see Him as He is."  1 john 3:2


Janette@Janette's Sage said...

Oh I have prayed for this family...and it reminds me of my post "When Two World's Collide" where we have just walked through this...too close to home.
I am so glad we have a hope and although I don't understand why both young lives were taken home so early, I do know who holds the world, and He cares for us all...and He dries the tears and holds us close. He reaches out across the different generations!

Blondie's Journal said...

You have a way of writing and this brought a tear to my eye.


Cindy said...

I've witnessed this as well. I'm so glad you were there to lend some comfort to the young woman and receive some from her.

Sonja said...

you saw each others hearts, and God let you both be comforted. What a beautiful description of the differences, and yet the sameness of the hurting hearts, which aren't defined by age. Thank God He comforts each of us, and His love covers us all.

Southern Lady said...

Beautifully written. Carla

Sandy said...

Beautiful and heartbreaking. So
sorry for this family's loss.
Glad you could give and receive
comfort from this dear young
girl. I am so thankful for the
hope we as His followers have.

Farm Girl said...

I have no words, only prayers. I am so sorry.

Lisa said...

I know your sweet voice blessed the family and brought some comfort. It is always sad when death touches one so young.

Vee said...

How sorry I am that these young people have had to suffer this loss. May they know the comfort of the Lord. It's not easy to minister to the hurting, but I am so grateful for those who do.

Gloria said...

God sweetly brought you to this family. For comfort in their time of need. Saying a prayer for all of them (and you) right now.


chris said...

so very heart-wrenching...but such a well-written post, so full of emotion. i am glad of the ending.

Henley on the Horn said...

I am so sorry. DOn't you love how the Lord uses us?

Cinnamon said...

That was a beautiful post. Reminds me that we all hurt and need comforting no matter what we look like on the outside or how old/young we are :-)


KarenHarveyCox said...

I am so sorry for your loss and for that family. I am sure that you brought comfort, as you always do to so many. You are a very special lady.


Jenners said...

How heartbreaking. Very lovely post and so well written. Very touching.

Anne Lyken-Garner said...

So terrible when a young one dies. This reminded me about a funeral I went to. He was driving much too fast - he'd just learned.

It's really a sad thing.

Darcie said...

I can only imagine what comfort you gave to her in that moment. Sometimes our outside appearance can mask so well what we are really feeling inside. The youth need the elders. The elders need the youth.

Beautifully written.

Tamara's Treasures said...

There is such a comforting Jewish custom of sitting Shiva with those who mourn. Your post reminds me of that.

Cheri Bunch said...

Beautiful! You are special!

Deborah Ann said...

I can relate to those mourners. Why is everyone else happy and smiling? Don't they know that the world just came to an end?

I never sang at a funeral before, but I have attended plenty.

A funeral, like a wedding, brings in all kinds. But with the common joy or mourning, depending on the occasion, there is unity and strength in the gathering.

I love the beauty in your are a dear friend...

Joan Elizabeth said...

There is something elemental about mourning. The moments from that time linger in memory for a very long time.

Auntie Cake said...

So sad. It is so wonderful that you were there to offer comfort, just when that girl most needed it, and had the insight to know it was needed.

Yesterday my hubby did CPR on my friends husband. In the rush to do his work, my hubby vaguely thought he knew the woman, but was not concentrating on the wife, just the husband. It was a shocker to find out later that day it was my friends hubby who had passed on. I so wish I could have been there to offer a little comfort during that horrific time.

The older I get, the more I learn how fragile life is. (I hope that doesn't mean I am growing up...) My friend told me the story of being absulutely compelled to tell a passing stranger how beautiful she was. The stranger burst into tears and said she had just come from her doctor and he had written obese on her chart. My friend made an impact on that stranger. If only we could always tell each other, "You are beautiful!"

Auntie Cake said...

You are beautiful!!! said...

Lovely Post. Great piece of scripture. xx K.

Jodie | Velour said...

Yes! What Auntie Cake said. :)

Erika @ ~TiptoeButterfly~ said...

i'm ur newest follower - i commenected before - but i HAD to write again - ur blog just has me HOOKED!!!!!!!!!!


*kiss kiss*
Erika @ ~Tiptoe Butterfly~

Leslie said...

Beautifully written, Lea and what a sweet spirit you have. So glad you were there to touch not only her family, but all the kids (like mine) desperately trying to make sense of it all. Oh, the brevity and frailty of life. I'm sure your hug to that young "friend" meant more than we could ever imagine.
Love, Leslie