Ashes and Irises

Lughnasa and the Chesed Moon

Thursday gratefuls: Mary and BJ. Jon, Ruth, Gabe. Diane. Joe, Seoah. Kate, always Kate. 77th. Sushi, thanks Mary. You Raise Me Up. Diane’s words. Mary’s birthday cards. BJ’s balloons and plates. Birthdays. Lacrimae. Ashes and Irises. Mourning. Grief.

Sparks of Joy and Awe: Ruth, awakening.

Tarot: The Prince of Pentacles, Druid Deck


BJ played this as an instrumental, referencing Josh Groban’s singing. Here he is. The lyrics are there, too.



Kate, Jon, and BJ. On BJs deck. The eclipse.

Kate’s 77th birthday. On it I secured authorization for my new, pill-delivery androgen deprivation therapy, Orgovyx. Also, called Levoit to say that my new air purifier didn’t work. They’re sending me a new one. Set up the Conway air purifier for the larger room. It worked.

I bought a teak scoop for removing ashes from the Richard Bresnahan urn. After I half filled a Ball canning jar, put the lid on, and recovered the urn, I sat and cried. Her physical self, reduced to ash. Her birthday. Her. This was well before anyone came.

I drove over to Bailey to the Cutthroat Cafe for breakfast with BJ. Over a breakfast burrito, BJ, and eggs over easy with chicken fried steak, me, we talked about life, music, Kate. I asked her to take the wheel for the Kate’s celebration.

She and Mary did. Mary bought a wonderful sushi meal. They also brought balloons, yellow roses, a yellow tablecloth, flowery plates, and cherry pie.

BJ, Mary, and I went to the synagogue to see Kate’s yahrzeit plaque. Her Olson stands out among the Lipsteins, Lorditchs, and Levines. That was what yesterday was about, memories and memorials. The plaque will be there as long as CBE exists. The Iris bed, extended at her request, has her ashes sprinkled around each of the old and new Irises.

We gathered around the Iris bed, my laptop perched on the bird bath so Diane, Sarah, and Annie could join in. BJ played the instrumental version of You Raise Me Up while Mary held the sheet music. Diane spoke of Harry and David’s, the monk’s cheese, Kate’s warm greeting at a family reunion. Mary showed a large birthday card she bought last year for Kate’s 76th birthday. “We talked about 76 trombones,” she said. A zoom call a year ago. While this happened, I went around the Iris bed to each individual plant and left some of Kate around it for nourishment.

By the time it got to me, I could hardly talk. Sobbing. I know I’ve said this before, but I’ll say it again. Kate and I made each other better, made each other our best selves. But she’s gone and it’s really sad without her. Broken sentences.

The zoom call ended and we went back inside to have sushi.


The Prince of Pentacles: “A practical, patient, and methodical approach to a project may be needed. These qualities may be needed to improve your health and nutrition.” Druid Craft Tarot

Gosh. That sounds true.



This entry was posted in Family, Health, Jefferson County, Judaism, Memories, Mountains, Our Land and Home, Plants, Shadow Mountain, Tarot, Third Phase. Bookmark the permalink.

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