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Vicky M Semones

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Believe In Magic
By Vicky M Semones
Monday, June 04, 2012

Rated "G" by the Author.

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An amazing encounter while visiting my father's grave at Forest Lawn, Glendale, CA. [ItsAboutTheLight]

     My father's name was George.  My name is Vicky.  But, I was without identity as I drove through interlocking freeways from the beach near Redondo to Forest Lawn in Glendale.  The business trip to Southern California was behind me.  Ahead, lay a destination even I could not have anticipated. 

      There was no intersection where the 101 freeway becomes 134 East.  Just a sign marking an invisible change in a continuous strand of motion.  It was at this junction that I reached for the radio dial in search of any sound to distract my thoughts from the miles driven in silence and sorrow and remembrance of my father.  A muted "click" revealed even the airwaves were part of this intimate journey.  Instantaneously, "The Way We Were" began to play - yes, it was too sentimental.  But my stifled cry finally cascaded to blur, then wash clean the passing images in a flood of warm, full tears that intensified the soft spring light.

     Seemingly unguided, my car continued onto I-5 South and then to Los Feliz Boulevard- East, then to the corner of Glendale Avenue.  Here, at the Glendale Flower Mart, I stopped for a bouquet of multi-colored carnations for Daddy. The florist arranged the blooms baby's breath and greens, just so.  Yet, beneath the edge of the waxed wrapping paper, order gave way to disarray and tenacity, as stems and leaves were entwined: supporting, perhaps clinging to the blossoms.

      These flowers would have to speak for me.  For I had no words as I drove on through the iron gates of Forest Lawn,  incongruously opened wide for unwilling visitors,  into this final sanctuary.  Past an indifferent guard, over the sloping, curved road, up toward the Wall of the Ascension.  There, on the crest of a hill, willow trees swayed in blessed forgiveness.  Gentle birdsongs, carried on the sweet breath of spring, comforted the intense quiet.

     Here, from the edge of life, I walked up a gentle slope, through the broken shade, my heart guiding me to a familiar tablet of bronze.  My eyes did not want to see my father's name among the other indentations in the lush carpet of green.  My eyelids closed tightly to ease the sting of reality, then released their sorrow, again.  And through my blurred vision, I saw his name, now fringed with the low overgrowth of tenacious, interlocking grass.  I fell to my knees, without regard to the damp earth, and began to pull feebly at the intertwined strands.  They seemed too tightly to bind his name to the tablet and the tablet to the earth, keeping my father from my reach.  My fingers were inexplicably weak - sliding, grasping - futilely pulling at the tenatious grass.

     My private moan of grief and heartbreak disturbed the thoughts of another visitor somewhere to my left.  In a quick moment, I heard his voice softly imploring, "Here, let me show you how to do that."  I wondered, what could he mean?  How to do what: grieve, cry, pray? 

     Before I could respond or even clearly see, he was there at my side, with something glistening in his hand.  With a constant stream of words I could not quite understand, he talked through this intrusion. 

     Finally, through my unfocused gaze, I saw a suited oriental gentleman, with small clippers held firmly in his slightly trembling hands.  Slowly, carefully, efficiently, he marked the length and corners of my father's tablet, removing the invasive blades of grass. 

     I coaxed the errant cuttings back into the border of green.  This caretaker left my side for a moment, as I traced and re-traced my father's name with a caress.  Then, unfamiliar hands appeared again to sprinkle water on bronze, then whisk the glimmering beads to a sheen with a small brush produced from his coat pocket.  My father's name and Air Force insignia were again as fresh and bright as his memory.

     When my welcome intruder spoke again, I began to hear his words, telling me he had just tended his wife's tablet in this same way.  He was proud that his wife had been a phi beta kappa. He spoke about his surviving son. And,  reading my father's tablet, he remarked that he too is a  veteran, born just three years after my father.

     In thankfulness for his kindness, I tugged a yellow blossom free from the array of red, yellow, blue and white carnations, now gently placed in the ground vase below my father's tablet.  "For your wife," I said.  He took the gift tenderly; telling me yellow was her favorite color.

     I finally could say my name to him.  Then my helper said, in a voice that pierced me with its clarity, "I once had a daughter and her name was Vicky."  He then told me his name is George.  We could not speak - so we embraced across invisible boundaries to share unimaginable loss and comfort and awe - knowing we were part of an incredible magic.

 (c) 2012, Vicky M. Semones




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Reviewed by Regis Auffray 7/29/2012
Thank you for sharing this compelling and meaningful story, Vicky. Love, peace, and best wishes,

Reviewed by Amma Poet 7/25/2012
A beautiful, moving and magical memory to hold in your heart for eternity. It is within these experiences that bring us that much closer to our true Self and humanity. Truly Divine Beings are everywhere, angels, humans, and God's light permeates in times of great need and when we are truly ready to open ourselves to such experiences, the magic or divine energy enters in. Tears well up in my eyes as you shared your journey with me. :) It is when we become humble that we become closer to God's grace.
Reviewed by Donna Chandler 6/5/2012
A beautiful story that brings tears to those who have lost a dear loved one.

Reviewed by Karen McKeever 6/4/2012
This was an angel that appeared just at the right time. This is a very moving write, Vicki it touched my heart.
Bless You,

Books by
Vicky M Semones

Trembling at the Threshold

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The Casual Commuter

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Garden of Hope; Autobiography of a Marriage by Maryanne Raphael

Garden of hope is a frank, endeering memoir of two star-struck lovers who travel the world and Jim Crow America as a black-white couple in the 1960's...  
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Albert Russo: a poetic biography, volume 2-texts & photos by Albert Russo

a photographic and poetic itinerary of Albert Russo's life (he has resided on three continents) and literary production (in English and in French)..  
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