The gift and the garden

My dad had left me a gift.

In his box of important documents there was a small, black book which contained lists of who to contact and what to do once he had died. There was even a draft copy of a letter that needed to be written.

So, I spent the next days working, writing, calling and visiting. I got praise from my mum for being so helpful, but really this was a selfish act, since while she slowly came to terms with what had happened, I could ignore my feelings and get things done.

The feelings did come back, at odd moments. Many years ago I had had a dream that I was standing in his garden and, looking around, I spotted that it was starting to look shabby. In the dream, and on waking I knew this meant he had gone. A few days ago I was in the garden and found myself in the same spot I had been in the dream, seeing the same  things. That gave me nowhere to hide.

But... not everything is bleak. My mum has vowed to take on the garden and make it look good again. The house is slowly being cleared of the paraphernalia of the last few months and there is a hesitant sense of being able to move on,


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