Thanks to all who helped, who listened,
who encouraged us and supported us
and kept us whole.

This photo then: look at that smile.
What it was all about.

Lucille Abbey

September 22, 1907 - July 13, 2001

[I read the Eulogy below at Lucille's funeral.]

At around 11:00 a.m. on Friday the 13th I told the doctor that it was now time to take Lucille off of her meds and administer pain medication until her heart stopped. They advised that this might take a week-- perhaps two.

Lucille went to ether and dust on her own about an hour later, rendering my stressed decision meaningless, pulling one last joke on me, pushing me once more toward my perceived limits. What a crazy gal, and what a crazy world.

Eighteen months filled with laughter and tears and anguish and frustration and sickness and pain, a tapestry woven of equal parts chaos and love, trying to hand her just one more smile, one more embrace, one more caress of wind in her glorious white hair, trying to parlay all this impossible effort into just a few more please a few more I beg you a few more seconds of pleasure for her, trying to repay her for nearly five decades of dedication and steadiness.

She was my Grandmother my mother my guardian the ONLY constant in the mountainous and unrelenting turmoil of my life, and it makes no sense to me that she is and forever will be gone.

Viva Lucille! Lucia! Lucy Baby! We'll put another cup of that awful Lipton's tea up for you now and then; we'll raise a toast to to your honor for all of the garlic and pasta we ever cook; we'll plant a bush of your favored deep red roses below the window where you rocked your last months away.

I'll never again see you content and turning to the warm sun, gazing out the window of the car at a landscape you hardly see, or feel your forehead dropping gently into my chest as you welcome the slightest intimacy, or hear the brilliant surprised cackle of your laughter.

No more your life of watching over me—

sleep forever,
in memory only she lives,
peace and surrender of the last moments,
the heart finally stilled,
parchment of the hands pale and cool,
remembering love,
remembering me I beg you,
knowing I tried,
ease the self down,
peace and surrender,
afraid to let go the anchor,
the only constant,
ease it down,
I bathe my sins in tears,
this desperation,
my love and fear entwined,
a prayer for you madre mia,
for your white hair,
your beautiful white hair,
Forgive Me I couldn't do enough
Forgive Me I was not there
Forgive Me I didn't say enough
forgive me Lucille sleep forever
remember me Lucille
peace and surrender of the last moments
forgive me...

Back to LUCILLE Chronology Back to The Vortex home page Rick Lopez