Wednesday, May 14, 2008

The Firing

Caught between night and day
sun and moon
oceans and sky
caught between check in and departure
letters and language
conviction and contrition

In the liminal space of nothingness
is where grief lives

Until I give it language
welcome it into my space of somethingness
Form it, like soft, pallid clay,
between my fingers
and then fire it in a kiln
hot enough to turn flesh into ashes
and oxides strong enough
to shatter it when dropped

I hold it tightly
mix powdered paints with my tears
and I give it color

I do it in my time
And in my way
You do it in your time
And in your way

This is grief

~J. Cacciatore

A powerful piece of art...

Life before death is a sombre series of portraits taken of people before and after they had died is a challenging and poignant study.

The work by German photographer Walter Schels and his partner Beate Lakotta, who recorded interviews with the subjects in their final days, reveals much about dying - and living.


Kara Chipoletti Jones of GriefAndCreativity dot com said...

Wow, Jo, that photo series and bits of the interviews are SOOOOOOOOO powerful. I am just compelled again and again to find ways to fully live this moment because in truth this is all we have. But it doesn't depress me or make me bitter. It makes me want to dance and celebrate and BE right now knowing I can and want the floating joy. It also makes me unafraid to be with death. My own death, Hawk's or my mom's or anyone's. Interesting...

It also makes me remember something about Kota's death. When they asked me to hold him and I said no -- there was a clear feeling in my head that he wasn't there anymore and so holding his body wouldn't be holding him and I didn't want to hold the empty vessel. Though I have regrets about that -- and changed my mind that second day after his death even then -- I do have a moment of clarity now, a release, that I made a choice then, feeling like he'd already come to me the night before and clearly told me he was leaving. And so I knew he was gone.

Isn't that weird to recall that now after all this time.

Thanks for sharing this link with us!!

Dr. Joanne Cacciatore said...

Wow, Kara, that is a powerful recognition. Thank you so much for sharing that with me!


The soul still sings in the darkness telling of the beauty she found there; and daring us not to think that because she passed through such tortures of anguish, doubt, dread, and horror, as has been said, she ran any the more danger of being lost in the night. Nay, in the darkness did she, rather, find herself.

--St. John, Dark Night of the Soul

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