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Grief

 

By Denise Kincy

My ex-husband dumped my son’s ashes into the pond. He didn’t sprinkle or release them gently. There was no grace in the event. But grace never was one of my ex’s strong points.

I lean against a fencepost beside the water, doing what I do best: watching others. I can't keep my eyes off the woman who was my daughter-in-law. I feel sorry for her. I imagine she is filled with guilt for leaving him. Or maybe I just want her to be.

I despise this place. I haven’t been on this land in 25 years. It's not enough that my son has killed himself; now I have to make nice with his hillbilly aunt, my ex-sister-in-law, who was once beautiful and who I loved, and who I think blames me for my son’s death.

The brightest part of this day has been seeing my grandson. His mother hadn't allowed my son to talk to the boy on the phone in four years, much less see him. Now, here he is, playing catch next to the pond where he just watched his daddy's ashes sink.

I move away from the pond, avoiding my ex-sister-in-law. When my son was admitted to a psych ward she let me know what a terrible mother she thought I’d been. I mingle, nibbling on bits of food from the table under the awning. It makes me think of a tent revival. I smile and hug my family and friends.

I cry all the way home

 

Denise Kincy's essays, articles, fiction and poetry have appeared in numerous online and print publications including Hot Psychology, Skive, Underground Voices, The Front Porch and Foliate Oak. Denise received a Pushcart nomination in 2005. 

Photo "Will It Ever Stop Raining 1" courtesy of Kathryn McCallum, Orlando, FL.

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