Dead Things

Crybaby - Editor

by Marius Dicomites

It was worse than she expected.

Nothing could really prepare you for the cold, irrefutable confirmation - the shock of the moment when all doubts and illusions were snatched away to be replaced by a suffocating and onerous grief. The final day for the dead was the beginning for those left behind. This was when the mourning truly began.

Rachel watched silently as the long procession gradually gathered around the graves. It was still raining heavily – it had been raining for most of the day – and as they held their umbrellas over each other, she felt they were closing themselves off from her. They were a close, impenetrable group, and she was not allowed to be part of them. But she understood; she was the one to blame for all this. She had no right to share their grief.

From a distance, hardly feeling the cold or the rain, she held herself as she watched the ceremony. Desperately, she tried to draw some consolation from the priest’s words, but she was only reminded of what she had lost. How could words relieve the gnawing shock and disbelief she still felt? How could words ease the emptiness? There could be no persuasive reason or justification for all this. She just wanted those she had lost back again. She wanted things to be the way they had been before.

She lowered her head as the ceremony finished. The mourners passed her as they left. None of them spoke to her, and she didn’t attempt to speak to any of them. When they had all gone, she took a step towards the graves. But it was too much. Despite the stark reality before her eyes, she still didn’t want to accept the truth. The tears she had tried to suppress clouded her eyes. Falling to the ground, she began to sob uncontrollably.

And then they came. They wrapped their arms around her and took her into their fold. They held her close and tight. Whispering to her, they pressed their faces against hers; they rocked her gently and tried to soothe her as the reality penetrated her consciousness and she began to scream with grief. Holding her even tighter, they drew her away. She didn’t resist. She needed peace. Surrendering, she fell back against them; she hid within them as unwanted memories flooded relentlessly into her broken mind.

Willingly, she lost herself to them, and prayed that she would never recover herself again.


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