There is no Title

by D. C. Haddock

Last night, I dreamt that a huge backpack, laden and heavy, was precariously perched upon my shoulders as I struggled to heave it up a flight of stairs, bent-backed and broken. As it always happens in dreams, I made no progress, and the more I fought to climb those stairs, the blacker my mood became. At some point in that dream state I realized that my endeavor was futile, and that it was time to start a new scene, and suddenly my mind switched the picture to a countryside landscape, where I was riding in a carriage hand in hand with a mysterious stranger, my head on their shoulder.

If only it were that simple.

I deduced at once that my strange backpack-dream could only be the outcome of my being in the middle of finals. My sense of duty and responsibility to my education often sets my teeth on edge, probably more so than it should; my bag was filled with literature papers, fractal equations, Tribes-Chiefdoms- States, html and Perl codes, Mesa Verde and Pecos Pueblo and Copan, yellow journalism, Iolanthe, Shapely-Shubik and Banzhof… how did that fill my bag so fast? My bag must be pretty small. But I know subconsciously that my load is much lighter in comparison to others.

I will not pretend that I can even remotely begin to understand the loss of a child. I will not pretend that I can offer any kind of comfort that will come close to touching the despairing heart of a grieving parent. I will not pretend that I could ever possibly fathom the interminable chasm that accompanies the departing of the child that one has conceived, nourished, raised and loved from the second they came into being in the wombs of their mothers to their last breaths. I am not writing words that haven’t been written or thought of before this moment. I can’t see a purpose to this writing; I can’t see a purpose to their deaths. There is so much that I will never understand.

Life seems aimless, until it meets Death.