In this time of omicron, of budding autocracy, of a less than joyeux noel, the first since Dan’s death, my cat Jackson sits on the radiator cover, the cool mist of the tabletop humidifier wafting by his whiskers, curling by his marshmallow white left ear, his face awash with pleasure, eyes half-closed, and I think to myself “what a wonderful world” and remember waltzing around this room in this apartment in this city with my dear one, Louis Armstrong serenading us, before metastasis, before aloneness — and I see that stream of mist as a mantra, each infinitesimal droplet nestling with its neighbors in harmony to produce what looks like smoke but what feels like the fog rising off the rocky shores of Maine, that place where we made love at dawn that first summer of many seasons of devotion, and I am brought to a feeling of near ecstasy reminiscing, all because my cat lifted his ballet pink nose into the air in concupiscence, breathing in the tonic to this desiccation, this life-robbing dryness of winter, this artificial heat, not the kind of summer, of passion, of a campfire burning crisply, crackly, it’s percussive bursts a reminder that all things turn to ashes eventually, but that in that process they create heat, light, and if we are lucky, happiness – either, as Edith Wharton reminded us, by being the candle or the mirror reflecting it, and I think to myself, “it’s a wonderful life” and feel grateful, not quite delighted, just short of joyous, momentarily content, happy even, remembering that I too can be comforted by the gift of simple things, by the warm moist breeze of a happy memory tempering this coldness, this aridity of grief.
Published by Trish Deveneau
Writer of creative nonfiction, retired teacher, pet mom, mom of two adult humans, nana to two wee ones. Avid cook, yogi, gym rat, art lover; maybe too earnest for my own good. View all posts by Trish Deveneau