"A human life is a story told by God."
~ Hans Christian Anderson ~
My Cousin Nat was buried last Friday, and he went out in high style.
A Dixieland Jazz band playing slow, soulful music led a horse drawn cart with his coffin up the long farm driveway to the front porch.
A mix of prayers and psalms and songs, all chosen by him in his lifetime, were his final farewell.
And then the band led the cart and my Cousin Nat down the driveway for the last time,
to the family graveyard three miles distant,
where a bagpiper on a hillside called him home.
Back at the farm, on the front porch, the band continued to play late into the night,
and it was hard to walk away.
I started to leave, and then sat in my car with the windows down just listening to the music-
listening with my whole body and my whole heart-
feeling nostalgic, feeling grateful, and feeling that sweet sadness I have come to know-
for the ending of something that we have once held dear,
and the sorrow of that loss.
I take nothing for granted.