Over a five-day period, thirteen members of our family came together right here in Vermont to celebrate (in more-or-less chronological order):
--The publication of her first novel by my daughter S
--My husband's and my 47th wedding anniversary
--The legal marriage (as opposed to the unofficial one, which took place a decade ago) of my daughter A and her partner K. The celebrant was Beth Robinson, who spearheaded the civil unions legislation in Vermont.
--My husband's 70th birthday, which he marked by jumping out of a plane at twelve thousand feet
That's a lot of rejoicing--but no joy on this earth is unalloyed, and beneath all the hoopla ran the anxious continuo of A's very recent breast cancer diagnosis, which is what has kept me from writing here lately.
But days pass, plans are made, and hope revives.
In the midst of the festivities, we also interred my mother's ashes, as per her instructions. We dug a hole under a young beech tree and poured in the cream-colored grit. I patted it down with my hands, and was glad to see an earthworm wriggling in the moist dirt. Together, the worm and my mother's remains will enrich this particular bit of Vermont soil.
The birds are mostly silent now; the sumac is turning red; and it's time I got back to writing.