You solemnly walked through up a gravel pathway along with half a dozen others clad in black. Perhaps it was raining. I heard once that the rain is the tears of angels weeping for what they never said but perhaps that day they wept for me. Maybe it was bright sunshine with the odd wispy cloud drifting lazily across the sky. The men’s jackets were removed and resting folded in half over their arms. Or the sky was that dull grey infinite blanket of cloud, never quite moving but never quite still, in a weird distorted sort of limbo.
When you reached the door and slid into a seat, perhaps the room was full or only a few. The vicar stepped up to the pulpit and sadly spared a glance at the casket next to him. Maybe there were prays to be said or he was just there to oversee the show and a few people were lined up and waited patiently for their turn to make a long eulogy exonerating good qualities and deeds and memories. After all you never speak ill of the dead. They were people who never gave a damn or made my life hell. They’ll never accept their portion of the blame. Perhaps there were only one or two who had tear stained cheeks and fond words, and did nothing but blame themselves. There may have been a mix of the two, some would have artistically dabbed the corners of their eyes and said kind words while others held back sobs from echoing around the room.
You might have had to file past the casket and trailed a hand or fingertips lightly and briefly over the dark coloured wood. A few people hesitated a moment before being forced on by the person behind then or led away by the person in front, either way they were hurried on. Almost as if death were catching, a disease you could outrun, but eventually everyone’s chance of survival drops to zero. Or perhaps it was the fear that death would catch up to you rather than death itself, as it were a thing to be avoided and shoved to the back of your mind and the darkest recesses of your thoughts, to be ignored but always there.
At the end of the service you mumbled your condolences to the family, not quite able to look any of them in the eye. Maybe it wasn’t the fact that I died which stopped you. It was the fact that I wasn’t old, fragile, ill or even in an accident of some kind. I was young and healthy and apparently had everything going for me. That would be the exact reason my name won’t be mentioned once people had mourned and moved. It would be the fact neither you nor anyone else could have seen a reason for my death. No one could have seen or predicted my death.
My name won’t be mentioned but perhaps in those silent moments you’d occasionally think back and remember me. A sad memory but a memory none the less.
You’ll remember the question you asked always yourself on the day of my funeral, “What is so wrong that she wanted to die….”
A blank that won’t ever be filled.
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