On February 29, 2000, my mom leaped between worlds to a new place where I could not see. I drowned without warning, unable to swim as my roots were now tangled around me. To return to land, I took my own leap through cold time, dark embers, and hologram waves of the psyche. I since came around to myself, but recast. Death must be something like that, a luminous transformation where the soul is returned to the source but now changed.
The thing about the Leap Day loss is I have more comings than goings. Each August we dine on her favorites, sweet corn on the cob and ripe peaches. All of us feel the heat and the storms. The lightning is common and deep. The roots of the willow rise up to meet the lily, hydrangea and lilac. We are dressed up and singing like heaven or love when it's new and celestial. Your heart, that is summer, her birthday. The day she arrived in this world.
Since 2000, we’ve had Leap Day 3 times. It felt strange to see the occasion marked there on the wall. What else could I write in the square? Most years send the gift of detachment but here it was staring me back. Is there really a way to escape? Perhaps the void between the 28th and the 1st is the space the most real regardless. Because I wasn’t there when you came but you even shine at the end and I could replay pools of darkness but you always gave me your light.
photo credit: Hani Amir via photopin cc