Tucked Into Drawers

A fragment of a grocery shopping list… this is probably about 25-30 years old. It’s her handwriting.

The address label is her mother’s… also about 25-30 years old. I keep these fragments tucked into a drawer… too insignificant for a page in scrapbook, or it’s own “sleeve” in a photo album, but because her handwriting beckons her presence, these scraps are not insignificant enough to toss in the trash. So, I compromise and just keep them in the drawer in the china cabinet in the dining room. Whenever I do  happen to come across them, it’s like she dropped in for a surprise visit. I never expect to find her, when I do.

People are, for one period in time, a mass of cells, atoms and matter — dense — and they take up physical space. They are real.  This is how we define people. Then, poof, they will disappear like dust in an instant. And all you have left, as proof that they once stood here in physical form, are snippets of their handwriting, or the address label that once directed posts to a home.

Not until those bundles of cells are crumbled into dust do you begin to see what has been there all along. What people truly are transcends physical space. They are, instead completely malleable, with a capacity to reside in the corners of drawers, alive in those certain songs, and silently standing by your side as that scent settles around your shoulders.

Time is such a wonderful healer.

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