Tuesday, December 02, 2008

A Farewell

It won't be long now. That's the message that makes work seem suddenly unimportant. All I can think of is getting there before it's too late.

It won't be long now. Waiting impatiently at the station, I read to try and distract myself. Finally the train leaves. Half an hour and I'll be there.

It won't be long now. On the bed is a woman who lost her husband almost a quarter of a century ago and kept her illness secret for many years. Her family is gathered around her, waiting, thinking.

It won't be long now. Her breathing is rapid and shallow and we wonder whether she knows we are all there. My mind drifts to memories of trips into London during school holidays. Can the last of those really have been almost half my life time ago?

It won't be long now. Eventually, I say my goodbyes and take my leave. There's no reason to stay right to the end. I'm just glad I was able to be there to see her before she left. Now starts the wait until the phone rings again with that last, fateful message.

It won't be long now. And then the tears that stubbornly refused to come during that long afternoon may begin to flow freely.

5 comments:

Blue Witch said...

Beautifully written.
Thinking of you Dave.

mooninthegutter said...

Ditto BW. Thinking of you.

Dave said...

Thanks, both of you. Sadly, she passed away early this morning.

la peregrina said...

Yes, beautifully written, Dave. I am so sorry for your loss.

Blue Witch said...

Hope everything that needs to be done at these times is coming along and that you're all OK.