This is a link up to Alphabet Thursday, the letter H:

It should have felt harrowing. Combing through her mother’s cremains.

It didn’t. Because she was as focused as only one can be combing fingers through ash seeking out the tiny bone that hadn’t been pulverized – and finding it.

She felt a rush of satisfaction, the thrill of finding a ring, some prized possession, lost at the beach…

And ash is a bit like sand — all grit.

Though finally nothing like sand; so fine, the ash that spilled on the kitchen table became ingrained in the wood as she tried to divide up the cremains. Her mother had been returned to her in a black plastic box the size of a small office wastebasket.

She would bury her mother. In the black box which would be lowered down into the columbarium via a black net.

But she would keep some of her in the old brass cigarette box she remembered from her childhood, engraved with tree branches. The cigarette box that sat on her parents’ coffee table back when she was small and they both still smoked.

Though human ash tastes nothing like sand.

She licked the tip of one finger. It tasted at once both sour and sweet.

The taste of her mother…

No. Harrowing was not in the seeking. It was in the tasting.

And in the holding. She cupped the tiny bone in her palm.

About Sandra

Author;editor of The Woven Tale Press at thewoventalepress.net; mother; weaver
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8 Responses to Harrowing

  1. So good to ‘meet up’ with you again ~ Powerful written work here ~ and lovely tribute to your Mom ~ xo

    Happy Week to you,
    artmusedog and carol

    • Sandra says:

      thanks for coming back here. I need to write to prompts at this point I think, the writing is not coming easily otherwise since my mother’s death…third person fits just right:) Good to be back in touch.

  2. Well written, though, for me, hard to read. Powerful.

  3. Susan Kane says:

    Finding closure in such an intimate way is hard to imagine. I hope when my own beloveds will find the grace in such a way.

  4. Evocative and well-written. Thanks.


  5. The taste of her mother. What an amazing scene to visualize. Thank you.
    The View from the Top of the Ladder

  6. Wow.

    This was really powerfully written but at the same time incredibly intimate.

    I felt like I was watching the scene unroll before my eyes.

    Just incredible writing skills.

    Thank you for linking them to the letter H.


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