Nov. 27, 2017


As I mature, death becomes more real, less feared, more readily accepted.

All my relatives: my grandmother, cousins, great grandparents, and my parents, are buried in a small-town cemetery resting in a clump of pine trees on a Missouri hillside. In 2013, I chose to spend July 4th with my father at his final resting place. Thick grass spread a soft blanket over the sleeping, as birds sang and squirrels played hide-n-seek between the headstones.

Several graves displayed American flags, to honor those dedicated veterans who’d served in various wars. An atmosphere of quiet peace and timeless memories surrounded me; I sensed an untroubled calm, noticeably absent from my daily life. I stayed longer than I planned.

Standing in that silent place, surrounded by those who had quietly surrendered, I realized that life offers many worse fates… than death.

Sally Miller