In death, we've grown accustomed to the removal of useless organs and the drainage of once vital blood, replacing with embalming fluid preservatives, fighting decay, even in death.
Washed and dried, oiled and waxed, combed and preened, dressed in our best, we lay ready for our final viewing, disinfected with the promise of delayed decomposition.
Gone are the days we tended to our own, mothers and daughters, sisters and aunts, friends and neighbors working together, washing remains with loving hands and scented soaps, bodies touched by salty tears and clean smelling powders.
Gone are the days we gathered together in intimate fellowship, in homes and on mountain sides, celebrating the transition from life to death, saying goodbye, guarded by our men, our brothers, our families.
Tending to our own has become a lost art, a lost humbling opportunity for reverence, a lost process and forgotten practice; the new way has become a silent empty space in our culture, societal bonds even more broken.
The cold droplets speckle my face if I dare to look up, to face what's coming.
Coupled with Wind, they nudge at my heart, my steps, and my mood.
Pushing me gently with soft pressure, much like my great grandmother who had lost her strength, but still held her power.
Clouds release their bounty on us below, cleansing, opening pores, washing away secret sins and screaming blemishes.
I am baptized in the rain, no witness necessary.