About Me-email is... grant.go@aol.com

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garden bay, west coast, Canada
persistent digging,never say never

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Soot




Written by Grant G

Originally posted February 2/2012


I'm reposting this for a reason....... 

Goodbye Kleo The Cat 


SOOT


With a big disposal bin placed out back I finally found courage to remove the charred embers of my past life......

For months now we waited patiently for a promised clean up by our insurance company, weather and excuses dominated and day after day I would drive by my scorched home, my head would turn 90 degrees to the left driving in and 90 degrees to the right on trips out of the driveway as looking directly at my burnt world and family graveyard wasn`t possible, memories would flood my mind bringing tears of sadness....

The horror, trapped loved ones succumbing to smoke and fire, in the news of late there have been story after story of children lost by families as homes burnt down, recently hundreds of prisoners perished in a sea of flames, trapped by cement walls and locked gates, yes indeed my heart weeps for thee, is there a good way to expire, is one tragedy harsher than others, sisters and daughters stalked and slaughtered by insane predators or stupid preventable accidents striking down fearless youth, even dreaded diseases that spread in a flash and hijack family futures for no apparent reason but random selection in life`s unwanted lottery...

I ordered the big ugly waste can and faced my fears head on, with shovel in hand, crowbar and bucket, piece by charred piece my memories past were tossed and discarded into a cold unfeeling metal waste bin, family offered to pay strangers to perform this personal menial labour but I refused the offer for responsibility and knowledge were mine and mine alone, the guilt of leaving no way out was my burden and in among the ashes were bones that deserved one final proper goodbye....

Sometimes trying to do the right thing has consequences for had I left windows open my beloved animals would have fled to safety but with cats an open window would mean tempting death all night in the land of stalking coyotes, having lost one family cat to canine jaws years back I vowed to never let them out unattended, and with my beautiful 26 human years old Siamese cat fast paws and sharp vision was gone, coyotes and cougars in my neck of the woods are common and curiosity killed the cat, open windows and my 3 day absence would mean night roaming pets not equipped to win, my safety concerns turned to be a death sentence and for that I will have to live with the emotions, I just can`t imagine guilt parents must bear when human children perish, bad wiring, open circuits or badly placed candles or causes unknown, my loss can`t compare but empathy I have....

Nothing much was left and it`s funny in a way what brings out emotions, metal springs from old furniture brought a quick toss but a metal water dish drained my eyes, it`s taken several days and today was the last, started at one end methodically cleaning and picking through ashes, hockey cards from decades ago barely recognizable, clothes drawers revealed black tattered bits of cloth, globs of glass from dining room sets, everything melted into a blackened warped form that no longer seemed real, tools without handles, puddles of wires where TV sets once sat, at the end each day of this ordeal undressing bare before entering my new humble abode was a must for caked on black ashmud covered me from head to toe, not wanting to track in reminders was necessary, into the tub with a coarse toilet brush was needed to remove soot from beneath my fingernails..

Each day of this ritual seemed a little easier and there were times when life itself was rising from the ashes, under a collapsed ceiling was a birds nest and these little brown fellers seemed fearless, they hopped around in the debris like it was a playground, I gently relocated the nest in a nearby bushy tree, odd pink mushrooms were sprouting from outer edges of the scorched zone and earlier today I reached the last corner of my lost home, this is where my beautiful feline children would flee to when scared by strangers visiting or lightning storms and once there all the bones were found, the vision brought me tears for as fire and smoke raged they huddled together as one, they perished as one family, my family, it was almost too much to bear as I gathered up three sets of bones virtually on top of each other...

The bones are now in an old growth cedar box and a sea burial is forthcoming..


The phone rang as I was washing in the tub, I wasn`t quite done but was clean enough to jump to the phone, Mom was calling to tell me she`s joined a community center and is taking computer training, it brought a smile to my face and while talking and dripping water out the front window was a mother deer with her baby eating grass, I opened a window and took the photo above this post...

Life is a grand journey, locked on an emotional roller coaster that refuses to stop or even slow down, a clicking metal chain climbs joyous peaks only to come crashing down into the dark abyss of reality, happiness comes in the form of a phone call and sadness returns in the form of..

Soot still under my fingernails..

For today we rise to new peaks of joy.




Two dear friends sent me this, thank you Jean, and Mr. Walter v E....He looks like my departed alpha male named Jazz...Yes, and he does look like a mischief maker..

And we wouldn`t want it any other way...






The Straight Goods

Cheers Eyes Full of Tears

10 comments:

Don F. said...

Thanks Grant!
This is why I am drawn to and proud to be a part of this blog.

Anonymous said...

Too awful for words, one of those "I just can't imagine...." moments.

Public enemy #1 the mainstream media that specializes in ambulance chasing, riots, house fires (a lot of late), etc. sure missed the boat on this one??????

A belated Extra Happy New Year 2012, Grant, and it's still a very beautiful property.

Jean

Gary E said...

It's really refreshing Grant G to see that among all the shit government and big business hands us, as well as personal grief, there is a man out there that has taken time to smell the flowers.

Thanks Grant.

Grant G said...

Yes it is Jean, thank you, Don, you are indeed part of this site as are all of you..

Gary E...A man`s man, I know from our many conversations that you more than most know all about taking personal responsibility for their actions..

Life`s twists and turns aren`t always planned..


Thank you

Anonymous said...

e ngtogeI think 2011, was your year of sorrow. You lost so much. Then you lost the solace, of your three beautiful cats.

Through it all, you have kept us informed. You say what you mean, and you mean what you say. We can always count on you for honesty.

I don't know about this internet snooping. I smell a big fat rat. Is our Freedom of Speech, to go out the windows, along with the loss of our democracy?

Kim said...

Thank you for sharing this difficult part of your journey with us Grant G.

I'm so glad your mom is taking computer classes. Perhaps she shares your talent for storytelling? We all could benefit from the wisdom of our elders...

Peace brother, hugs...

Chris said...

Peace.

dan said...

I was wondering if you have discovered or been informed of the source of ignition to this unfortunate event.

Anonymous said...

What a difficult time that must have been. I remember reading this at the time and feeling so badly for you. It's still very difficult to read. But you have many readers who shared the journey with you through your writing. You have done such fine work over the years.

Grant G said...

2:47pm....Thank You