I have nothing especially profound to say on the subject of my grandmother’s passing. There’s no magical aphorism or comforting proverb I can etch out across this ever changing platform that will soften the tremendous guilt and heartache that I feel.

I can’t even begin to explain my grandmother to anyone who doesn’t know my family’s story, and the story of South Lebanon. My grandmother was almost 100 years old, and in that time she lived through both the occupation of our homeland, and its liberation. I am indebted to her in ways no one will ever understand. I wish I could do more than make a pilgrimage to a burial plot, and wash a headstone.

The bitterness of grief will come and go in waves. It will creep into even the happiest moments like an unwelcomed guest. It will knock, and I will answer. Her memory will be a blessing, and for that reason we’ll mourn.

— — — —

“O’ questing birds, what seek you in your wanderings? 
They made answer: 
We are the hopes of youth; and here our beloved 
lived and suffered. 
She was the rose in our garden, reigning 
justly with the submission of all therein. 
Yet all too soon we saw her fall from her throne,
then disappear. 
And so you see us ever searching for some trace of her, 
Or flocking where once she was won’t to be.”

— Khalil Mutran