By H.E. Saunders

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In a morbid way he wished it were raining. It only seemed right that if he was mourning someone so beautiful, everything else breathing should too. The air, the earth, the sky, everything alive should be mourning with him. The sunshine that lightly warmed his perfectly black suit itched and angered him. Head bowed, the back of his neck was getting close to burning and the sunlight was mocking him. Mocking his pain. It’s a beautiful day to everyone else in the world, a day that people would never believe was full of loss. And sorrow. 

Watching her rosewood coffin being lowered into the ground he contemplated sorrow. The lack of tears at such somber events was finally evident to his dry eyes. Simple loss flowed from widow’s eyes, but sorrow, true pain at losing this fallen person, couldn’t even be recognized here. No, sorrow was something that settled inside you once you returned home, and touched all the things that would only be touched by you again. Sorrow was burned so deep inside your soul that you couldn’t even recognize it until a great time later. Tears were a show of pain. A cry for attention. Pity me. A mockery for the person who had actually gone. 

With dry eyes, in increasingly warming sunrays, he stood alone with the preacher. The slow mechanical hum of the lowering brace created a distinct awkwardness in the air, in some odd way making the whole event surreal and distant. Once she’d hit bottom, where she’d stay until she wasn’t anything anymore, the preacher gave a respectful nod and silently walked away. The holy man’s departing back flowed between the markers of the past deceased, the recently forgotten, and Terry’s eyes blurred. 

Looking back to her resting place, he swallowed hard, trying to force away the lump in his throat. He’d be damned if he was going to cry.

– H.E. Saunders