Wednesday, February 23, 2005

Dorian McLeod Taylor Plesh

Every day lately I'm hearing about someone who has been killed. Every day. I don't know if something unusual is occurring in the Universe or what, but everyone lately has a story of someone close having died or been killed.
Today is the second anniversary of my mother's passing and, strange but beautiful, several people, without knowing what this day is for me, came to me and told me or read to me privately about anniversaries of their parents' passings. EL wrote and read to me about her father who passed two years ago in April, and how she looks just like him. DD, whose father died last week, has her 18th birthday tomorrow. She wrote about how the two of them loved to watch professional wrestling together. DW had to leave the class while we were writing (about someone on our minds). I wasn't surprised. This morning before class I told her my story about my mother. Something just told me to. And I know her story. I'm afraid of being corny but I want to be real and say that we cried together and that I said to her that we, and every other person who has lost a mother, understand each other, and that because of a mother's passing we gain the gift of compassion and the ability to give solace to other people, just because we understand the unique pain. I never understood emptiness and loneliness until my mother passed. And now I not only understand mine, but DW's too. I'm afraid that I'm crazy to call it a gift, but it seems so to me.)
When DW came back into the room (the other students were worried about her and wanted me to go after her. I put my head in the hall, but I knew I didn't need to, because we'd talked and I knew she was as okay as she could be and that she was doing what she had to do. And I knew that she knew I was completely aware of her. But I love it that the children were so worried about her.) When she returned she had a speck of glitter below her left eye which looked like a clown tear.
It's the writing that's opening all this up. It shows me that we're getting real. But it's like looking at the sun and hoping our eye protection is sufficient.
My mother, Dorian Mcleod Taylor Plesh, died two years ago today and was buried on the 25th, her 84th birthday. Her death was not a tragedy but her life was. She had some moments, but too few for a poetic woman. She died before she found her voice, though she knew she had one. That's the worst part. My friend Anne said that she hoped heaven was like Florence, because her mother loved Florence better than any place in the world, and I'd like to say I hope so too. But for my mother, I hope heaven is Scotland and that she is with her people.
She was a lonely woman. I wish I had been a better daughter.



Anonymous Anonymous said...

Not all deaths of parents, friends, or family members are physical deaths. What about their spiritual death or their mental death or the death of their love toward you?

I don't understand why all we do is talk about how *wonderful* someone is after they have left the world instead of telling them all of these positive things while they are still on earth to appreciate them --- I hate funerals. Death I can understand and even embrace, but funerals I cannot.

- Cassandra R.

11:35 PM  
Anonymous marg said...

We all wish we could have been better daughters - but by definition of "daughter"...we are what we are.

9:49 PM  

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