• Bluelight
    Shrine




    A memorial
    to Bluelighters
    who have passed away

RIP ektamine

Asclepius

Bluelight Crew
Joined
Aug 30, 2010
Messages
6,574
Location
Europe
So sad, so sad, so sad. It is summer and hot. Green, the world is green. Boys with surfboards fling themselves into blue water and come up paddling strong. Water sparkles and the sun starts to slant away from us. I am out here in the wind and sun, spinning, spinning, alive. But , like a cloud suddenly covering the sun I am seeing people in dark rooms, afraid to be there, afraid to leave. This day means nothing to them, nor does the season, the thinning light, the life humming like bees in every tree I pass. I don't know why they came to me right now. Maybe so I would think of you, a boy with a foot in both those worlds. So, OK. I'll go there. Me outside walking towards you in your apartment. Climbing the stairs. So many beautiful days collapsing into that little cupboard of darkness. Trying to coax you outside. Seeing that you had covered the windows. One world right outside the other.
You are an amazing human. Your beautiful, strength never ceases to floor me. <3
 

herbavore

Bluelight Crew
Joined
Jul 26, 2011
Messages
14,936
Location
in a dream
A year before you died, one of my students died. He was at his own birthday party at the beach--the first day of his eleventh year. The kids found a sand cave in the cliffs and he went in first followed by his best friend. The cave collapsed and his lungs filled with sand. He was a boy that loved life, loved adventure, loved opening all the secret little doors of life to see what was there. His mother told me a few years ago that 5 years for a grieving parent seems to hold particular significance. I listen to her. She is very wise and she is miles ahead of me on the same path. She is the one who warned me in the very beginning that I would lose everything, starting with what I held most dear, what defined me to myself. She was right on that count, so I am feeling myself out this morning as I prepare for tomorrow. So strange that I mark these birthdays of your death but I need them; it feels good to make the fire, light the candles, sit with you without distraction, be silent. I've already written here about the inventory of losses the years have brought. I've written about the missing, how it goes on and on, carving its own Grand Canyon.

The truth is that 5 years means there is no more confusion of time. It used to often feel like no time at all had passed since I found you with your airless lungs, your ruined body still so perfect in youth. Now, I am afloat in the great sea of my own forgetting. All the old questions have floated away. Good riddance. But there are more. They rise around me like beautiful translucent jelly fish, expanding and contracting like slow breaths. Where are you? What are you? What did you keep for the journey? What did you let go?

Yesterday I read an article by Craig Childs about living within the understanding of how the world is always ending and always beginning. It is called The Skeleton Gets Up and Walks (a quote from Henri Miller: "The world dies over and over again but the skeleton always gets up and walks). It is timeless and timely....a field guide in a way for living with and through the 6th great extinction here on earth. As something ascends, something else falls away. This is the grand scale where everything from thousands of species to entire civilizations have a birth, a life, a death. But weren't you that grand to me? No one can imagine a world without polar bears, a world without elephants, a world in which no birds but the crows survive. I could not imagine a world without you and yet here I am. You used to try to get me to see the cosmic view, the one where this planet's hard birth or slow death or both were simply part of a miraculous swirling unnameable whole. And I used to try to get you to focus on the beauty of now, of small ordinary lives and daily breath. Its all the same thing, isn't it? Oh, Caleb, how I miss your conversation. What would the 25 year old have to say that the 20 year old had yet to conceive?

And so this month of May has come again and now is ending; the month when you might have turned twenty five and instead are five years gone. As your absence swells, my own life quite tangibly wanes and I will take your absence with me when I go. There is some strange comfort there.
 

Atmozfears

Bluelighter
Joined
Aug 14, 2015
Messages
207
This made me burst out into tears. Oh boy. Don't know who the person was but for some reason this really hit me hard.... RIP
 

herbavore

Bluelight Crew
Joined
Jul 26, 2011
Messages
14,936
Location
in a dream
^^@Transcendence:I know that you every word I write, dear friend that I have never met.<3 Sometimes I feel our sons could have had so much more to say. Other times, that they just got tired, even of talking.<3
 
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herbavore

Bluelight Crew
Joined
Jul 26, 2011
Messages
14,936
Location
in a dream
What is the whole of our existence but the sound of an appalling love?
Father Damien, nee Agnes Vogel from the novel The Last Report of the Miracles at Little No Horse by Louise Erdrich
 

herbavore

Bluelight Crew
Joined
Jul 26, 2011
Messages
14,936
Location
in a dream
Miss you so much in the summer. Remembering how much you loved the light, the warmth, the relaxed vibe, the bonfires and ocean waves, bbq's and our trips to the river. <3
 

aplumgirl

Bluelighter
Joined
Apr 25, 2016
Messages
195
I've read this thread so many times. It makes me remember that life is to be treasured.

It sounds like he did a lot in his young life, traveling, exploring the world and himself.

I find the greatest testimony is his mother who turned her personal grief into an outpouring of love here at BL!

What a legend!
 

herbavore

Bluelight Crew
Joined
Jul 26, 2011
Messages
14,936
Location
in a dream
Last night a dream world opened up and ran for what seemed like hours. You and your brother were young but not little, maybe 7 and 10. You brought your whole self to the dream, the intense emotions, the silliness, your impatience and also your easy fascination with something new in your world. I don't remember what we were all doing except that it was so mundane; the sense of safety and peace and profound rightness that I used to feel going about my chores hearing you two involved in your own worlds, growing, building, moving forward into your deepening selves every single minute. I experienced this dream with an awareness I never had living it: with the knowledge that this would end soon and that while your brother would continue to step through the phases of life into new realms of being, you would veer off somewhere unknown, away from being Caleb, that I would never again have the peaceful safe feeling of having you near. But even with this awareness, the feeling I had was an intense appreciation rather than grief. I think this dream must have come from some deep shift inside. I'd like to think, I'll have more of these, but who knows? The overall feeling that this dream brought was one of sheer wonder that we had unselfconsciously created such a universe; that those Lego and book and stuffed animal strewn days and nights were a miraculous little bubble of complex harmonies reverberating through space and time.

For five years I have written about you and to you. I started a book last year to compile the poems, making each page first with paints. I had an urgency in my heart and in my mind and the words poured out. I feel a space opening up now, a wide chasm of emptiness where that urgency used to be and the pages and the poems and the paints seem irrelevant. Like everything else that your death has brought, this is uncharted territory and I don't know how to think about it, so I just feel. The feelings are: bewilderment, uncertainty, fear, resignation, a deeper sadness diluted with a deeper peace. That last bit is probably one of the strangest feelings possible. I read something the other day that said, "Questions don't want to be answered as much as they want to be held". That made so much sense to me and almost seems like my sole purpose now: to hold questions.
 

cj

Bluelight Crew
Joined
Nov 18, 2008
Messages
9,718
Location
On a sinking boat
Its ok to put projects aside when your not feeling it anymore. Listen to your feelings. But I guarantee you that book isn't irrelevant. Even if you never publish its what you needed to do at the time.
 

herbavore

Bluelight Crew
Joined
Jul 26, 2011
Messages
14,936
Location
in a dream
I have been avoiding this place, Little Man. Too much sorrow, too many inadequate words, too little strength.
 

herbavore

Bluelight Crew
Joined
Jul 26, 2011
Messages
14,936
Location
in a dream
This morning, in the pale pink dawn, the old dog of your death looks weary. Three times he circles around his desire to sleep, curls into it, settles; then opens one eye, a slit so thin it is like a knife blade, trains it on me, sighs.
 

Jabberwocky

Frumious Bandersnatch
Joined
Nov 3, 1999
Messages
41,137
Location
Looking-Glass Land
Caleb passed before my time here on Bluelight but reading through his shrine today was enough to make me cry. I like to think that during those five wonderful years I spent in Santa Cruz ('97 - '02) perhaps we crossed paths. It's a nice reminder to go ahead and smile more at the strangers I meet. Thank you for sharing your heart with us all Herby in this touching tribute to life.
 

herbavore

Bluelight Crew
Joined
Jul 26, 2011
Messages
14,936
Location
in a dream
Caleb passed before my time here on Bluelight but reading through his shrine today was enough to make me cry. I like to think that during those five wonderful years I spent in Santa Cruz ('97 - '02) perhaps we crossed paths. It's a nice reminder to go ahead and smile more at the strangers I meet. Thank you for sharing your heart with us all Herby in this touching tribute to life.
Thank you for your sweet message.<3 I didn't know you had lived here. I imagine that if you did cross paths with Caleb in 1997, (he would have been six), you most certainly would have smiled. When Caleb was six he began to inexplicably dress like a little Mormon missionary. I bought all my kids clothes second hand and let them pick them out whenever possible. So you would have seen this hippie looking mom with this kid that had on a little white button down collar shirt tucked into his pants (where did he even get the idea for that look in this town? :)) with his hair neatly parted on one side and slicked back with water so that no hair was ever out of place. He had some white tennies that he also took great care to keep clean. I was pretty fascinated by this look but by the time he was 8 it was a thing of the past. Had you seen him at 11 (2002) you would have seen the classic little surfer 'grom' with his long blonde hair flying as he few around town on his skateboard or headed out into the waves on his first surfboard. Thanks for bringing those memories to the surface.<3
 

herbavore

Bluelight Crew
Joined
Jul 26, 2011
Messages
14,936
Location
in a dream
Rest in eternal love and gratitude, cat with the most unlikely name. We debated the name together, agreed it was ridiculous but somehow it fit. Goodbye, Mouse, most loyal friend to all of us--no family favorites for this one. I wonder which crazy nickname you would greet her with, Caleb? Kalashnikov? Mushka? Or just Mousarina? Whatever name it would be, I hope you are there to meet her.



 
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