Of all the days to have a box of ashes delivered to your house, I think the Day of the Dead is the most appropriate.
Blake's mother passed away four weeks ago. We've been steeped in the process of losing a parent for the first time. It was not expected but he was able to get to her, and say goodbye, to give her comfort.
On Halloween, he was given the news that his mentor and friend Father Daniel Jensen passed away over the summer quietly in the Maryknoll in upstate New York but no one had informed him. Father Dan married us in Mexico under the shadow of the great El Castillo at Chichen Itza twelve years ago. He was a Catholic priest who lived among the Maya for thirty years, not to convert but to appreciate and serve within a culture he adored. Blake and him had bonded over their mutual admiration for pre-Columbian art and ritual.
Exactly twelve years to the day of that ceremony, Blake held his mothers hand as she passed through the veil. And today, the day we have adapted for our own ritual of honoring the memory of those we love who have died, her remains came in a US postal service box: a knock and a signature and pass off.
Death is as crisp and real as the sound of fall leaves under my feet and stirring in the streets. Fragility is in the air.