Dante Gabriel Rossetti
I have been here before,
But when or how I cannot tell:
I know the grass beyond the door,
The sweet keen smell,
The sighing sound, the lights around the shore.
You have been mine before,
How long ago I may not know:
But just when at that swallow's soar
Your neck turn'd so,
Some veil did fall, I knew it all of yore.
Has this been thus before?
And shall not thus time's eddying flight
Still with our lives our love restore
In death's despite,
And day and night yield one delight once more?
Sometimes I wonder if I have been before. I wonder if Shannon and I were together and chose to come together again. Did we know what each of our souls would need to experience in order to evolve? Did we know that the choice would require a love so deep that even the pain we would come to know, could not keep us from accepting that choice? Perhaps we chose to spend twenty-three years together as mother and daughter, knowing that we would part too soon but agreeing to share the time we would have, understanding that we would not remember that we had made the choice from a place of higher understanding, because we knew that love would show us the way through.
I would not trade one second of my life with her for a life without pain. She was, is and ever will be my Sudden Light...in life and in what we believe to be, death. A thought, a fragrance, a song, a poem, a flower or a note tucked in a book and she is here.
Today I lost a bee hive. It is so silly to feel sadness but I do. I noticed a decrease in numbers and before the sun got too hot I opened the hive expecting to be greeted with large numbers of guardians only to discover a handfull of honeybees, anxious and erratic. This spring, my hives swarmed multiple times. If the hive is healthy and the numbers meet certain criteria, the kingdom decides to create new queens. Once the new queens emerge, the existing queen leaves with a select number of her minions, to build a new home. This particular hive had at least three swarms. They moved very high into the surrounding trees and I opted to let them go. Once the new queen is acclimated and her new family imprints on her unique perfume, she makes one flight, to find the drones and mate. On that maiden voyage, she gathers the DNA to fertilize her hive for the rest of her life. It is a dangerous flight and sometimes the new queen does not return. Without their queen, there are no new baby bees and eventually the numbers are too few to guard the hive. Wax moths, varroa mites and hive beetles see this as the perfect opportunity to move in, and that is what happened to my oldest and once thriving hive.
It's funny how something as insignificant, in the overall scheme of things, can be the catalyst for every other sadness to float silently to the surface.
And so I wander from one task to the next, finishing some, starting some, deciding another can wait one more day. I think about everyone I love and how much I miss those no longer a phone call away. I know we are all still connected. I know that Shannon is probably standing at my shoulder at this very minute, but I can't wrap my arms around her.
To add to my melancholy, I can't really wrap my arms around anyone, well except for Jules of course, these days. Social distancing and masks and caution and responsible actions and little people who can't really grasp any of this and know that hugging is in our DNA, look at us with huge questioning eyes and an enviable innocence that would melt even the most ominous of viruses.