J. Wachowski

Journal Entry of My Parents’ Passing

My brain is scrambled.
I went out, left the broiler on, 
and I walked the dog.
Ergo, I’m losing it. It’s already happening. 
Maybe? 
There is tension in my fingers as I force myself to slow 
down and write 
each word clearly, 
make my handwriting look less like hers. 
At the end.

Oh lord. There’s a constant 
cacophony 
rattling around in this head. 
“I can’t even hear myself think!”
Every thought tumbles into view
bright and jagged as a kaleidoscope

It hurts. 
Shifting what’s important 
I twist with fear about 
what I should attend to 
ignore
pay attention!

One turn of the wheel to the next.
Instead of doing anything, 
any of it, 
just stare at the mess and
do
nothing.

Today, the brightest thought is that old question. “Do you forgive them?”
“Forgive?”

Oh, for Christ’s sake, not this again. Again? 
No. I did this already. 

Yes, I know. I see it. There’s resistance there. 
Really? But, really? What is forgiveness anyway?

“Forgive them, Father. They know not what they do.” 

There is something of the future in forgiveness. 
There’s the rub. 
That’s where I resist. 
Yes, I can’t stop thinking of his struggle. Her jagged thoughts.
And 
I feel the connection—forgiveness sought and offered, back and forth.
For all the times I was stingy with my love. Mean, in the oldest sense. 
I’m sorry—so truly sorry. 


Even knowing all that I know, even having done all that I did, 
(how can a person become expert at washing and dressing dead bodies so quickly?
still, I feel that 
tension. 
Was it enough?

Perhaps 
it is now, shall ever be, 
world without end,
complicated. Make mistakes.
Wonderous. Walk the dog. 
Love.

J. Wachowski is a writer and teacher, who has made her home in Wheaton for over 20 years. She is honored to be included with the artists of Anawim Arts.

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