I walk past the wards, mindful of the pitiable state of those on the beds. I don’t like to stay here for long. They are all sure to die within a day or two.
I have decided to share my wealth with my daughter in law. I do not know why I chose to be blind all this while. My fine jewelry cannot pick maggots from my oozing wound, comb my hair and hold my hand. My daughter in law has been doing all that and more, day and night. And all that I have to give her is what is no longer of any use to me.
Call our son and the girl he has chosen to marry. Remind me again why I have been opposing this marriage bitterly. Forget it, don’t remind me. Just ask them to get married and come here right after that. I want to see them both in their wedding best. Soon, I will not see anything at all.
No, I did not know I could sing. I just cooked and worked and then the husband happened and the children happened. Nobody told me I could sing. I didn’t have the time to find out. Now, everybody has left me alone. Today, I am alive. Today, I will sing.
I will die but I will never talk to him. Wait a minute, how does it matter? I am dying, am I not? I might as well see him and talk to him. I will remember some of our old jokes. Perhaps, he will remember to laugh, too.
Each has a different story. Each is on the verge. However, they are not prisoners resigned to their fate, but new graduates in life.
It is so easy to plunge in, stir things up and gather the muck—hoard, hate and hurt. Then, suddenly, all is still. On the surface, you see yourself for what you are—a flimsy reflection at the next ripple’s mercy.
They are all in the wards and I am outside, striding confidently past the bandaged and the weak, all sure to die within a day or two. Then it strikes me. So am I.
I have just become a student of the best teacher of life, death, ever imminent .