I bend ever so slightly over the edge of the silenced sailboat and stare at the water below. I see my rippled reflection bounced back, moving and disconnected. With grace and compassion, I lower my hand, cupped full, slowly releasing its contents into the clear waters below.

Dust clouds swirl, amorphous billows of grey-colored matter move and twirl, quickly spreading their fine clay-like particles towards the stern. The ever-changing granules head outwards, starting their long journey to share themselves, forever spreading, dispersing, and intermingling with neighboring water molecules.

The heavier ashes choose a different path, quickly separating and sinking without hesitation towards the lake bottom, settling in the nooks and crannies that call out. These white granules travel to a different beat, with different intentions, choosing to pay tribute to the now by finding solace in the burial grounds below.

Ashes to ashes,

Dust to dust.

Goodbye, my friend. Thank you for sharing the gifts you brought into this world with those you left behind.

Larry

Larry’s wish was to have his ashes spread at Beaver Island, Michigan, a 13-mile long paradise found off the northwestern coast of the Lower Peninsula in Lake Michigan. Some of us drive up and ferry out, others take a sailboat, a four day get-away to honor our friend. We disperse ashes on all sides of the island: north, south, east and west, in honor of the directions. We scatter ashes by air, land, and sea, making sure Larry’s wishes are fulfilled.

Larry is gone. The mystery that meets us on the other side is now familiar ground to him. His cycle is complete.

One door closes; another opens.

I remember Larry’s kindness, his deep powerful voice, and his gentleness. I remember his diplomacy with others, his calmness, his willingness to always lend a hand to help others.

These were the gifts he brought to my life in the short time I befriended him.

Time Passes Quickly

Our time on this earthly plane is short. In what seems like a blink of an eye decades pass, our children grow up, and another generation appears.

We become wiser, developing greater understanding and compassion towards others. We realize there is no one answer, no correct way to live a life that works for all. We do the best we can do, forgiving ourselves for our past transgressions, and now focus on helping others along their way. We smile more, we open ourselves up to the new, and learn to appreciate the small, but oh-so-important things that life offers for free.

We become less critical and judgmental, finally understanding that that which we found so irksome and challenging, was actually our own past haunting and burdening us. Our spirits grow and we learn about ourselves and others. We find comfort and wonder in the simplicity of an evening sunset, the magical array of millions of glistening stars above, and the sounds of children playing in the park.

Life is a gift. Cherish all life’s moments.

Give thanks.

We all are so incredibly blessed.

Be well my friend. Rest in peace.

I will see you yet another day.

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