At times I believed that the last page of my book and the last page of my life were one and the same.
For her I changed pebbles into diamonds, shoes into mirrors, I changed glass into water, I gave her wings and pulled birds from her ears and in her pockets she found the feathers, I asked a pear to become a pineapple, a pineapple to become a lightbulb, a lightbulb to become the moon, and the moon to become a coin I flipped for her love...
The third movement is one of the most moving passages ever written, and I've never listened to it without feeling as if I alone have been lifted up on the shoulders of some giant creature touring the charred landscape of all human feeling.
Why is it that there was always a unit on history, math, science and god knows what other useless, totally forgettable information you taught those seventh graders year after year, but never any unit on death? No exercises, no workbooks, no final exams on the only subject that matters?
I took a drink, wiping my mouth with the back of my hand, repeating the gesture that was made a hundred times by my father and his father and his father's father, eyes half closed as the sharpness of the alcohol replaced the sharpness of grief.
I would have let him go one finger at a time, until, without his realizing, he'd be floating without me. And then I thought, perhaps that is what it means to be a [parent] - to teach your child to live without you.