Brent’s been gone six months now. I remember a little tidbit from a college psych class that six months is considered the proper length of time to grieve someone. Well, it seems painfully short if you ask me.
I’ve never been one to experience grief in the classic sense, the debilitating collapse over the loss of someone or something.
I suppose that comes from my concerted belief that we are made up of more than just these physical bodies. Brent believed so too, and it was a common discussion between us.
I like to think of it like this. We are the sum of three parts.
—Of course there is the physical shell in which we inhabit. It is akin to a conveyance, a means of interacting with the material world, to enable us to have a tactile experience with the world.
—We also possess a soul. Everyone has one, though some are older than others. When our physical form “gives up the ghost”,as they say, there are options. Reincarnation is one possibility, Some become trapped on the material plane,while others traverse the multiverse. Some are consumed by light, some by darkness, and some create a new light all their own.
—Then there is our spirit, that spark of divinity that has always been and will always be. Through its interaction with our body and soul, the universe experiences life. This is the hardest to define.
Atop a hill overlooking Turkey Creek, on the land I was raised, was a two ringed fire pit my friends and I had constructed. Brent supplied the chalk-white landscaping stones, leftovers from one of his construction jobs, and a half dozen or so of us humped them over the creek and up the hill.
The fire pit was shaped like a keyhole and was purposely ‘facing’ west, with Venus rising above our large back stone.
It was a special place and we camped and conversed there often. After much consideration, Brent and I came up with a name for that hilltop — Lad’a Mitheroch. We’d pieced the name together from J.R.R. Tolkien’s invented elvish. It meant ‘The Plain of the Grey Horse’, although Shaun called it “Bob’s Field of Bad Dreams”.
We carved out a special path from below, winding up the hill so that you’d enter the space by passing between two mulberry trees, a male and female.
It had a magic all its own and I would be lying if I didn’t say I missed it.
But, anyway, the point of this story is, one night, Brent and I had a helluva blaze going up there. We were passing a bottle of Canadian Mist between us and chain smoking Marlboro cigarettes (he Lights, me Reds).
Beneath a canopy of stars, our discussion was of the universe and our place in it. Brent expounded up his theory that close friends like us had lived many lifetimes together, with our souls reincarnating over the centuries, but that we exchanged spirits, making us all the closer through this crucible of interaction.
I liked the idea then. I like it even more now.
Against the backdrop of the multiverse, what’s six months?
Measured against eternity, a lifetime is less than a heartbeat.
It’s easier to miss someone when you know you’ll meet again.