Thursday, January 21, 2010

mortality

drawing by Grace (5 years)transferred to satin and embroidered

For Yvonne mid 60's, who died Jan 20, 2010 and for Kayla, age 22, who died Jan 15.


"The woman turned and picked up a stone and said "No. I will throw this stone in the river. If it floats, we will always live. If it sinks, people must die." The woman threw the stone into the water and it sank. The woman turned to Old Man. She said, "It is better this way for now they will always have sympathy for each other."
from the Blackfoot Creation Story


"Remember your dying time in order to keep the stupid and the ugly out of your living time."
from Family Matters, by Rohinton Mistry

12 comments:

Jennifer said...

Oh my gracious that is lovely!

Mnemosyne said...

i love the use of children's drawings in quilts.

Jeana Marie said...

I'm so sorry for your loss, Judy.

jude said...

i don't know the personal details here, but i can certainly feel it.
why is it we know these things but constantly get distracted by the stupid?

La Dolce Vita said...

I feel the pain in this post, but thank you for the Blackfoot story and the quote.

arlee said...

an exuberant celebration of life and lives

Clare Wassermann said...

what wonderful cloth...it has life in itself..

Sandra said...

I feel and know the pain. don't know the details of your post, but I am sorry for your loss. My loss and pain happened 7 years ago on Jan 19, my son. we can help eachother with kind words and prayers from our hearts. thank you for sharing this, I need this too.
Blessings, Sandra in AZ

Judy Martin said...

I am thankful for these comments.

It is interesting that some mention the joyful image, while others relate more to the text.

Yvonne was a friend of ours for our entire marriage of 35 years. She will never be forgotten by her many friends, she went out of her way to be a friend herself to so many.

Kayla was a classmate of my youngest daughter, and she was a twin. Her unexpected death was such a tragedy as she left behind a new baby boy.

The image from my daughter's drawing is one I put on a quilt I made about my mother who was ill for a long time, but had so much energy. She never talked about her own pain. "Cry Me A River" she'd say, and that is the title of the quilt, made in 2001. Mom died in 2007.

All last week, I kept hearing or reading texts that said that we must remember we are all going to die. I am reminded that scholars used to keep skulls on their desks to remind them of this.

To me, remembering I'm going to die makes me live harder. Do more. Be kinder.

Judy Martin said...

Have been thinking more about death as I went through the day. Yes, we have to remember we're going to die, but we also have to forget it.
Otherwise, we would go crazy I think.

The other thing I was thinking is that death is so darn final, and it is very very sad. I grieve for these two deaths because they have hit me on a personal level. I also grieve for the magnitude of the Haiti earthquake disaster deaths, and the ongoing deaths in the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Death is not explainable really, but it is inevitable.

Am thinking too much, and I thank you for the opportunity to talk about it a bit here.

Mnemosyne said...

i thought about death a lot before giving birth. i wrote letters to my family that were meant to be opened when i went to the hospital but i also wrote them thinking if anything horrible should happen this is what i'd want to say.

i wrote a lot of loving things but also advice and guidelines i'd want those i love to live by.

i've lost all but one of my grandparents and a few friends while they were young.

i agree with what you said about living as if you're dying but also needing to forget it as well.

a cloud will hang if you can't push past it. what doesn't appear futile if you think completely about the absence of everything.

Velma said...

wow, judy. i just want to say thank you for this.