About a month ago, at the beginning of spring break, a boy from M’s school and his friend, who had graduated from her school, were killed in a car accident. It’s such a tragedy, of course. It also turns out that the first boy was the nephew of a fairly good friend of ours, so when the school had a memorial service on Tuesday night we went.
It turned out that M’s friend R drew the portrait on the cover of the program, and her friend S was there videotaping the service.
His stepmother read a beautiful poem, but I’m only able to finds bits of it online. Sometimes you can’t find everything online. So I’m off to the public library this afternoon to see if it’s available in a book. Here’s the bit I can find online:
. . Don’t live in the world as if you were renting or here only for the summer, but act as if it was your father’s house. . .
Believe in seeds, earth, and the sea, but people above all.
Love clouds, machines, and books, but people above all.
And his aunt, our friend, read a beautiful section from the Kaddish, which I also can’t find.
The family seems to be doing all right, although I doubt they will ever really recover — it’s been a month, now, and I think that one thing that’s been amazing for them has been finding out about the wider world their son inhabited. This is true for any kid, of course — you think they belong to you, but they have a life outside, too, and people out in the world know and love them, too, and know them as both the same and different people that you know them as. You could tell that they were comforted by knowing that their grief was not only personal.
We went out for dinner after the service with some other friends who were there, including P, who has moved to DC. It was great to see them, even though the occasion was so sad.