08 August 2007
It was twenty-five years ago today that my Dad died. Emphysema got him. He claimed he got his first paper route at age four, and smoked his first cigarette at age six, or it might be the other way around. Either way I believe it.
He used to send me to the corner grocery with a note to buy him a couple of packs of Benson & Hedges 100s. When I finally figured out how bad they were for him, and refused to go for him, he never got mad about it. It was my way of saying "I love you" to a fellow that was not good with those words. I think his acceptance of my refusal at the ripe age of 10 was a way of saying thanks - which he was not good at saying either.
So today I decided he deserved his own shrine, his own altar, and his own prayers. So I set his picture by my Buddha, and lit twenty-five candles. One for each year since he died. Charlotte and I sat in front of all the candles and we talked about his life and how I miss him. I guess those were the prayers - my memories. And speaking out loud the fact that I love him still.
There isn't much more to say after so many years. I hope he is free of all his burdens. I hope he has escaped samsara or at least had a good rebirth or snuck past St. Peter. Whichever.
Gate gate paragate parasamgate bodhi svaha!