I visited an old friend today. He has not long left in this mortal life.
He looked at me with eyes that had already begun to see other views, and with thoughts unable to be orchestrated into sounds that I might understand as words.
I could only stroke his hand, place a kiss on his brow for the years of friendship we had known, and wish him a speedy and calm crossing of the ocean between mortality and the next phase of life.
In a few days he will have crossed that sea, leaving his aged body behind, and his family to manage the grief of missing they will feel, along with the gladness that his pain is no more.
His face stayed in my mind as I worked later in the garden planting bulbs.
I needed to take off the outer layer of foliage protection that they had grown last season so that they then were ready for re-planting, shiny and clean.
The analogy was very striking as I thought of my friend’s situation.
He has had years of gathering upon his body and into his spirit, things that have protected him throughout his season of mortal life. But most of that will be stripped away very soon.
He will slip from his body with his spirit shiny and clean, unencumbered by the things that now control him, air, pain, loss of ability.
His spirit will be planted in a new place until the season that follows that of the planting, when he will once again be given a renewed body fit for his spirit to inhabit eternally.
I will think of him like that when my bulbs bloom next season.