Deaths Big and Little
"If I die,
leave the balcony open.
The little boy is eating oranges.
(From my balcony I can see him.)
The reaper is harvesting the wheat.
(From my balcony I can hear him.)
If I die,
leave the balcony open!"
This little poem by Federico Garcia Lorca is one I'm going to read this Sunday for All Saints Sunday. I'm going to read it in the community because it is about community, and ultimately the festival of All Saints is about community, too.
People think it's about the dead, but it is actually about community.
Lorca's dying wish is to die with others. And not just any others, but the various others he shared life with: like the random boy at the grocery and the little farm worker down the way.
And I have to think he wants to do this because these are the people he has already shared death with, the little deaths that come with truly living.
My big death at the end of my time is not the thing I dread the most. I dread the little deaths.
The little deaths like losing a job or having to move. The little deaths like having the kids move out of the house. The little deaths like changing your mind, transforming your life, and the small disappointments that come with being imperfect and living in an imperfect world.