On Saturday, I wrote a eulogy for my grandfather. It involved gifts – a VCR for my family when my parents didn’t (couldn’t?) buy one, stuffed rabbits outside the door of his home in Florida one Easter morning, glazed donuts – a dozen – almost every day when he lived next door to us.  .  5417832718

As we sat in that cemetery on a hill in the Pennsylvania countryside, I looked out over all the headstones there with my grandfather’s silver-blue casket among them, and I chose to see gifts in those stones. Gifts of life and legacy. Story and mystery. Ceremony, honor, brokenness, and family.

While the pastor talked about mortality and the life everlasting, I pondered how life lingers here, even when it seems to end. The way the people about whom I’ve been writing have continued for hundreds of years as names on inventories and as mentions in letters about business transactions.  The way they have become  part of my life, decades after their deaths. The way memory graces us with generations.

I mourn my grandfather, my mother, and while I do wait for that life everlasting and that reunion, I linger here in their stories – a gift of descendants and memory. Their legacy.  Quiet. All mine. All ours. Forever.

What legacies do you carry with you?