The Crimson Tree


In Memory of Jose N. Maza

My grandfather was born November 3, 1924 in Argentina. He went to school, worked, married, fathered half a dozen children, divorced, immigrated to the US, worked, saved money, brought his children to the US, remarried, passed in 1992. Most importantly, he was an exception grandfather.

Yesterday, my boyfriend and I visited grandpa at St. Michael’s Cemetery on what would’ve been his 89th birthday. The seven years abuelito and I spent together had a profound effect on who I am. My thoughts of him are bittersweet. I remember how great he was, then I remember he is gone and has been for decades. The tears are not as frequent now but they still roll when I see his photograph. As I started driving away, I had an overwhelming urge to cry my eyes out. My muscles tensed. Sad thoughts crossed my mind about how different my life would have been; about all the different choices I would have made. My heart sped. My mind cluttered with negative thoughts. But I did not cry; I did not want to ruin such a wonderful Sunday with him.

Thick gray clouds covered the sky for most of the day. However, the moment I approached a stop sign, the clouds opened up and rays of light illuminated this crimson tree. The vibrancy was unreal. This tree glowed. It was only a few seconds, but it felt much longer than that. Once the simming gray sea of clouds returned, I had felt at peace. My muscles relaxed and those impending tears ebbed. It was like a wonderful hug. I felt warm, protected, calm, and, above all, satisfied with my life choices. I drove off, glancing over at boyfriend, happy that this road called life has led me to him.

Day #1: I am honoring the memory of my grandpa by offering him 5 days of crimson leaves .


Edited By: JHB


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