Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Perishables

My apologies, first of all - and mostly to myself - for staying away for so long. I find myself curiously reluctant to write sometimes. I suppose that might be because I'm not as eager for introspection as I think I am. Or perhaps it's because I'm less eager for sharing. Or because I still wonder what this is and is going to be.

I'm also just plain tired.

I tend to stay up too late at night. Not because I'm doing anything in particular, but because when I put my head to the pillow I want to be sure that I will fall asleep immediately. I don't care much for laying awake; I don't want to think. Enough of that for now.

Tonight's post is about grapes. Frozen grapes. When frozen, grapes - red or green - become lovely little sherbet-like gems. Tart. Sweet. Cool. Refreshing. They were one of the staples of Aida's diet for the last several weeks of her life. She loved them and asked for them often; they met her thirst, cooled her mouth and throat, satisfied her sweet tooth, and gave her overall snacking pleasure at any time of the day or night.

In the final days, I peeled them for her; the skins had become difficult to swallow. We each took turns with a baggie or a freezer bowl of the icy tart delights at Aida's bedside. Grapes. Please.

Tonight I was washing a glass at the kitchen sink and looked to the left on the counter. A freezer Ziploc bowl and companion baggie lay thawing on the counter. One held red grapes and the other green.

It took me a moment, but I realized that these were what was left of the grapes that we fed to Aida in her final days. These were what remained of pleasure's memory. I had left them in the freezer, seeing them as often as I dip in to the ice machine bucket where they had been kept for quick freezing (returned there as soon as Aida was finished with each snack session on the sweet globes).

I knew they were there and each time I saw them I thought to retrieve them. But I couldn't do it.

It's really the small things. The details. The absence of grapes and an empty drawer where once were her socks is so much more final than a cold urn of ashes could ever be.

1 comment:

Lisa said...

Oh, my. Grapes.