June 28th, 2005


Mother Death and her children

I have, for close to 20 years now, called Her by the name Mother Death. I wrote a poem to Her back then, using that name, and it stuck. I think of Her in kinder terms than most. I have no problems with the idea of meeting Her, when my time comes. But then, I've been on the way there, once already.

Which might be why I'm a good person for the dying to be around. But I'm starting to feel a bit like a hospice worker or something. It's not Her that's hard on me. It's those she calls, particularily those I cannot help but think of as going before their time.

I got a call from my friend Debbie last night. Her cancer seems to be multiplying and spreading, rather like it's more than one cancer. Now it's in her bones, tissues, and skin. It's like an invasion of aliens taking over her cells. Her time may be shorter than she was led to hope, and it's a good thing I'm seeing her in two weeks, because it's anyone's guess how long she'll last. It could be six months, it could be a year or more. But it's coming. She's not ready. Very few are. At 98, Consuelo wasn't ready, and hung on determinedly until I gave her a long talking to by her bedside that it was time, and she needed to let go. It's going to be intense, I suspect. I'll deal as best I can.
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