Monday, January 11, 2010

The Requiem. A true story of tragedy and sorrow.

     The pitter patter of soft little footsteps was heard echoing down the hall toward his bedroom. Slowly the door opened, its cold steel hinges creaked quietly as the little figure brushed by. A soft hand reached out and touched his shoulder, gently shaking him.
    “Papa, Papa,” a little voice whispered. “Papa, I’m scared, can I sleep with you?”
His big hands reached out and gently pulled her to him, cuddling her between him and Mama, her favorite place of all. With his arm as her pillow, her curly golden-brown locks tickling his face, she silently went to sleep.
    The sun slowly arose beyond the silver peaked mountains. Its beams driving away the darkness, filled the corners of the silent house with warmth. Little Jocelyn was the first one to spring out of bed, slightly pulling the covers off Papa and Mama. “Come on Mama, get up, I’m hungry,” the sunbeams paled in comparison to her bright smile as she shook her Papa awake.
    Jocelyn was the apple of her Papa’s eye. Her tender and happy spirit would bring a smile to his face even in the darkest of days. Just one minute with her hanging on to his finger and he forgot all his worldly woes. When Papa came home from work, she was there to meet him and would be his constant shadow. How could he not love her most of all? It is only natural to love those who dearly love you.     

    Today was a beautiful crisp February morning. The early morning stillness reminded everyone of how cold it could be this time of year. Eventually the familiar sounds of the small village coming to life told the tale of a new day.

     Known only to the great God above, this day would live in sorrow and despair for both Papa and Mama. Oh, what would we give for a small glimpse into the future? Yea if we could only foresee a small moment ahead of time. But alas it is not humanly possible because of God’s infinite wisdom.
    The terrifying scream of a mother in mortal anguish resounded throughout the small town. The man working on his truck stopped what he was doing and listened intently for a few minutes to be sure he had heard aright. Again the desperate scream. “Help me, oh please somebody help me!”
    Leaping in his truck, the man raced up the hill in the direction of the crying. “Dear God,” he prayed, “Don’t let this be as terrible as it sounds.”
    Bringing the truck to a quick halt, he sprang from the seat and sprinted to the scene.
    What his eyes beheld shocked him to the core of his heart. The distraught mother sat on the ground clutching a small girl to her breast. Her wild eyes and blood soaked clothing told the tale of something terrible and heart wrenching. In her arms, her beautiful curls now matted and stained with blood, lay her precious Jocelyn. Without touching her, the man could tell she had gone to another world. She was dead.
    The man bent over, his hands shaking in sorrow and tried to sooth the mother. She looked at him through eyes wild with fear and screamed. “Oh man, please help me, please wake my darling angel up. She is only sleeping, oh please wake her up! Oh dear God, my husband will never forgive me, oh and I will never forgive myself. Please let me die with her!”
    Over and over, she pleaded with him. But the man hung his head in sorrow. He felt as the autumn leaves that drop from their lofty places scattered by the wind, only to be crushed by the thoughtless footsteps of man, completely helpless.
    The mother would not move from her humble place on the ground, even less would she release her beloved child to the man. She refused to face reality, no it was not, it could not be true.
   “How did this happen?” said the man, his voice cracked with emotion. Through her cries, she explained she wanted to move the truck out of the back of her yard. She ordered her children to stay in the house and then went out the front door and walked to the back and began driving the vehicle out of the yard. Little did she know, Jocelyn and her toddler brother Kelvin had snuck out the back door unnoticed. She started the vehicle and began to drive forward, totally oblivious to the fact that little Jocelyn was now in the heroic struggle of trying to save her brother from the crushing weight of the tire by jerking him away. Instead, both she and her brother ended up in its path! The mother felt the truck lurch slightly and her heart pounded in fear. What had she ran over?
     Through her tears as she recounted the tale, she was reminded that her small son was also behind the house injured and alone. “Please go get my son!” she cried.
    Another friend ran to help him. He was injured with broken bones but he was still alert and alive. He would survive.
    The man then ran to his vehicle and drove for help. Many friends and family gathered to assist her but could not comfort her, nay she would not be consoled. An ambulance was many hours away in a distant town. Even Papa was gone into town several miles away. He was called immediately and told of the tragedy. His countenance turned pale as death itself. He could not force himself to even believe such a tale as he raced for home. 
    Papa drove up and quickly got out. In a daze, he hurried toward his house. The scene before him drained his body and soul of life. His blood soaked wife sat in the dust, holding her lifeless little darling to her breast. She looked up at her husband through her tears and screamed in agony, “Oh Papa, oh Papa, please forgive me. I killed our darling baby. No, no, no, she is still here. No she is not dead, she is just sleeping. Oh please, please dear God, take me instead! Why oh why don’t you take me instead?”
    Papa reached out through his glazed eyes and gently touched his little darling’s blood stained face. His arms reached out, wanting to hold her once more, to caress her soft cheeks again, but he had not the power to lift them, it was gone. His big heart broke as a terrible moan escaped his soul. Turning away he could not stand the scene any longer and wandered aimlessly about his yard. An ominous smell stung his nostrils. Nothing seemed true. Everything was gloomy and dark. His soul was on fire, nothing made sense, nothing at all.  
    “Why oh why did it have to be her…and like this?” the words tore through his tormented mind over and over.
     Mama’s cries echoed off the walls of the now silent town. Her mind would not relent. It would not concede. Her child was clutched in her arms. She was still there. She had to be alive. She was just sleeping for a moment. Besides, God would not do this to her darling baby; he would not take her that way. “Wake up my angel, oh please God wake her up,” she cried, again and again.
    An agonizing hour passed as she gently rocked her baby back and forth beseeching God to reverse time. Begging him that she was just in a terrible dream and her baby would awake in her arms. The hardened hearts of the helpless men who stood silently watching, were broken and wretched. The women sobbed uncontrollably. Tears fell like raindrops from heaven.

    Eventually Mama unwillingly released her beloved child into the caring hands of the mothers who tenderly washed her body and prepared it to return to its creator.
    Deep into the night, Mama cried bitter tears of sorrow and regret. She could not forgive herself for what she had done, no never. In her sadness, she reminisced of the many times when she was down and discouraged little Jocelyn would always come and tenderly say, “Mama, why don’t you go get washed up and put your makeup on and change into your prettiest clothes. Then you will be happy again.”
    Now, her own gentle words of wisdom were coming to pass for little Jocelyn.
    From up and down the valley they came. Papa had made many friends and now they were here to offer a hand of consolation. A small and beautiful casket was made in the only carpenter shop in town. Little Jocelyn, in her favorite attire was gently laid inside and the lid was closed. Then, the saddened hearts of friends and family followed her to her place of final rest. The little casket was lowered into the earth and soon the dust from whence it came enveloped it forever.
    The sun began to set, and presently the people wandered home to heal. Mama stayed and carefully planted a single rose bush between the mountain rocks adorning her grave. Every single day for years thereafter, one would find Mama with her gallon of water, faithfully giving life to the blossoming rose on Jocelyn’s grave.

    The sun rises in the glorious sky, then fades into blackness. Only time can erase our sorrows and wounds. And time claims the soul from whence it was born.
                                                    Somewhere in Time         

     An aged mother lay softly on her bed, clutching her pillow as a tear slowly fell from her cheek and gently landed among the folds. Her mind had wandered back to that fateful day her darling Jocelyn had left her. Many years had passed and her broken heart had never fully healed. A child’s voice is never forgotten. The soft touch of a daughter’s hand can not be erased. The bright smile and curly golden locks were forever imprinted in her mind. But now time had come to claim its own.
    An aged mother lay quietly on her bed, her life here was fulfilled. Her heart beat slowly; it was tired these many years. She slowly closed her eyes. The tears were gone now. Rest, ah it felt so needed, so tired….so tired.
                                           An Ode to Joy

     The pitter patter of soft little footsteps was heard echoing down the hall toward her bedroom. The big wooden door softly opened, its cold steel hinges were silent as the little figure brushed by. A glorious sunbeam followed her past the big door, lighting the room with a soft glow. It was a new morn, a new day. A soft and oh so familiar hand reached out and touched her shoulder, shaking it gently.   
    Mama opened her eyes and rubbed them for a moment in disbelief. Had she heard right. Were her eyes deceiving her? She slowly reached out and took the soft little hands in hers as tears of joy cascaded down her cheeks. It was true. Her child was there beside her. She grasped her baby to her breast and gently rocked her back and forth once more. 
    “Mama, Mama,” a beloved little voice whispered. “Mama, don’t be scared. You can come sleep with me now.”
                                                            A New Beginning

This happened on February 3rd 2009 to a close relative in our town.
"The Man" was me.


Bendigo said...

That is one of the most powerful and heart wrenching things I've ever read... There's a knot in my chest just thinking of it...

Bendigo said...

I've presented you with an award, if you get a sec please stop by and pick it up... Gotta say again..Wow on this story... You managed to put that ray of hope in the middle of this tragedy...

Ian said...

Such a great post, more people will soon see it. Just wait...

Joanna Sedgwick said...

Thanks for sharing this. As a mom, that would be so horrible, I can hardly imagine it. And yet God is there, and loves us even more than we love these precious children in our charge.

shaunakh said...

That wax the hardest thing I've ever had to read! I wish it was just a story and I didn't know it was true. My heart and prayers go out to the parents and you. Thanks for the heartfelt sob. You have a way with writing.... The worse thing I've ever heard of , yet you turn it into a beautiful story. Espeacially the ending, the hope you remind us of!

Desertson said...

It was a terrible day, but yes, hope and a bright future is what we have to live for. Thanks for stopping by.

Aylinelebaron said...

Wow!!!! What a sad story, it made me sob,sent chills through my whole body, I can't imagine something worse, your an awesome writer uncle lafe, wow!!!!!! I love the beutifull ending, it keeps the hope alive. Keep up the good work. You're an inspiration!!!!!!!

Clarence langford said...

pops ive never cried by reading something, or in a movie. i thought i was kinda tuff.
but reading your story, there was nothing that could hold back the tears.

thepilashoppe said...

I'll have to admit the tears flowed here also...well more than once... a few hours after I read it Leah read it again outloud and she could barely read it she got so choked up.. but she finally managed to finish, with us both crying,..It was put together very well!

LaMoraGirl said...

I couldnt think of anything more tragic then that happening to someone, I always say that if I lost a child I wouldnt be able to go on, I would want to die also, and I always wonder how parents do go on and live their lives after something like that happens, but I realize we have to go on, God knows best and has a reason for everything, I still wonder to this day why he took Jesse, and Dad......Theres a reason, he needed them more than we did, but its so hard to try and understand, WOW..all this flood of emotions...thanks a lot Lafe!...:)

Emily said...

Cant believe Im reading this for the first time! Ive heard this sad sad story but Wow Lafe you have a way with words and what a tragedy! I cant even imagine the pain I would feel if that happened to me, its bad enough when a loved one dies but because of you? that would be something more than I could bare, I know its been a long time but we all should keep her in our prayers, even time wont heal a wound like that!!