If You Don’t Look For It, You Will Miss It

March 2, 2014


Death leaves an invisible silence, a wrenching disappearance of love’s voice and presence.

Your father held you in your first moments, poured his love and life into your cup, and told stories that created a fabled purpose from the dull chaos.  And then he was no more.

Are loved ones gone forever when they die?

They live a new, unselfish life within the murky, star-forming nebula of our memories.  We conjure them in moments of anxiety, sing along with them in the music they loved, and see how they once adored us as we tuck our children into bed.  And beyond our perceptions, they exist as nothing and everything.

And if we don’t keep a keen eye on the outside world, we may miss them there as well.  On a birthday I looked down and saw this dirty little puddle.  I paused, noting that it was heart-shaped.  And as great art can move mountains within us, so too can dirty puddles speak for the dead:

I love you.

it said.


In the moment my father died there was a beautiful, September-like sky, crisp and blue like the month he entered the world.  He shone in the sunlit footprints of his granddaughter as she ran down the sandy beach, brimming with her young life, a torch of his own.

My father jammed the electromagnetic waves of the police trying to call my cell phone to tell me of his demise.  Four times I answered the phone to static, which has neither happened before nor since.  Stay in this brilliant moment a little while longer, son. I’m with you and your family over this warm beach blanket as I join the sky, reveling in your daughter’s giggles.  Remember nothing in the universe has produced a greater sound.

We are of the world when we are born into it, why should we not remain of it when we die?

Look for your loved ones, hear them, sense them, and hold on in inexplicable ways.

Dream Mom March 2, 2014 at 11:53 pm

That was beautiful. I believe in that too. Ironically, a few weeks ago, I had something similar happen. I was putting on my liquid foundation (make up) and when I looked at my finger, the foundation had formed a perfect heart on my finger. (I even took a picture of it and posted it on my Facebook page, lol.) At that time, I remember it was a bit of a difficult day and I felt it was a reminder from God that I was loved.

Nice post, my friend.

kevin March 4, 2014 at 11:57 am

Well said. I haven’t been able to find that pot hole in the parking lot ever since. I think it required just the right amount of water to even show up like that.

hat_eater March 4, 2014 at 5:51 pm

Your post comes in just the right moment for me. Coincidence, many will say. Or I just scooped it up from the internet soup because I was set to this particular emotional frequency, the others will explain.
In the end, we choose what we want to believe.
Thank you.

robin andrea March 6, 2014 at 11:53 am

A beautiful tribute to your father and to the universe for those heart-shaped moments. We will always look for signs and meanings, because love knows no time. My deepest sympathies for your loss.

SeaSpray March 12, 2014 at 1:46 am

I’m sorry about your dad. Your post spoke to me …beginning with the first sentence. So eloquently written. Thank you for sharing.

I have never seen a pothole like that. it does seem to be a gift to you in that moment.

Acls online April 15, 2014 at 1:20 pm

Anyone can see anything. It is all about one’s faith, conception and perception. Thank for sharing and yes a nice tribute to your dad.
Best regards

Greg P May 8, 2014 at 8:18 pm

Something we all must do is connect. We have to connect to those around us, stay connected once they’re gone. Otherwise we have no map that says where we began, where we’re going or where we’ll end up.

robin andrea May 23, 2014 at 11:46 am

I thought of you the other day when I saw this fossil heart in the minus tide outcropping on the beach in Capitola.

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