Felipe Moore - Chapter Thirty-Seven

Kingwell By Kingwell, 23rd Aug 2014 | Follow this author | RSS Feed
Posted in Wikinut>Writing>General Fiction

The funeral for Myrtle Giles is attended by family and friends. Felipe help lead Mona home after the service at the graveyard and stays for the evening.

The Funeral

It was 2:00 PM on Tuesday August 30, 1955 and almost the entire population of Southern Arm had gathered at the small Anglican Church to pay their last respects and pray for the Soul of their life - long friend and neighbour, Myrtle Giles. The church bell that had been tolling for the past twenty minutes stopped at the Minister's signal. Six pallbearers, men dressed in their Sunday best and wearing black armbands, carried the wooden coffin up the aisle walking as was the custom, just a few feet behind the clergyman, as he intoned the centuries old yet familiar words, "I am the resurrection and the life, saith the Lord: he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live: and whosoever liveth and believeth in me shall never die" Behind the pallbearers walked Mervin Giles and his daughter Mona together with Myrtle's sister and two brothers. Also among the mourners were fifteen nieces, nephews and cousins. Sitting with his family in a pew just a few feet away, Felipe saw Mona's tear stained face as she rested her head on her father's shoulder and realized how difficult this must be for both of them. He had been with Mona for almost the entire time since her mother's sudden death and had promised to return after the service. Following the church funeral, there was the long walk up the hill to the graveyard and the even more difficult walk back to the house. Seeing Mona's distress after the final hymn was sung and the committal of the body to the earth "ashes to ashes, dust to dust" - Felipe took her arm and helped lead her home.

The Long Evening.

Felipe was at his house just long enough to change from his church clothes to everyday wear and to eat a plate of his mother's fish and brewis, and then he returned to Mona's place, just as he had promised to do after walking her home from the graveyard. He was pleased to see that she had reheated some of the food that her aunt had prepared earlier and that both she and her father were eating - an important first step in the long journey of seeing some form of normalcy return to the home. Felipe joined them in a cup of tea with the usual slice of bread and molasses. Afterwards Mona did the few dishes while he and Mr. Giles engaged in some small talk. He looked tired Felipe thought, and wondered if he had slept at all since his wife's death. Sleep, he felt certain, would not come easy alone in the double bed that he had shared with his helpmate for so many years. With the dishes dried and put away, Mona swept the kitchen floor and then joined the two men as the time piece, as many still called the wind up clock, ticked away the seconds in what was to Mona and her dad like the longest evening and night of their lives. Mr. Giles seemed lost in thought most of the time as he stared out the window at the gathering dusk. Shortly before ten he announced that he was going to bed and suggested that Mona should get some sleep as well. "You must return to school", he said in a manner of fact way, "your mother would have wanted it". He looked at Felipe, "it might be best if you stayed with Mona for tonight". Felipe watched as he made his way upstairs to the now lonely bedroom at the end of the hall. Bowed by grief he looked old beyond his years.

On Second Thought.

The young couple sat in silence for a few minutes watching the shadow of the flickering lamp on the wall. For the first time since her mother's death, Mona spoke of school and the upcoming exams. "you need to go to school tomorrow" she said quietly, "I'm not ready yet but hopefully I can make it by Thursday, there is just one more week before the exams". Felipe nodded but Mona wasn't finished, "It's probably best that you go home and get some rest" she said, " You have been wonderful, no one could ask for a better friend but I have to begin staying alone sometime and it might as well be tonight". Felipe, who was thinking of his intention to bare his soul to Mona, in fact was hoping to get the opportunity this very night, must have appeared a little perplexed at her suggestion for although he recovered quickly, Mona had seen the look and recognized that something out of the ordinary was bothering him. Immediately her thoughts turned from her own grief to empathy for her friend and knew at once that it was now her time to be both attentive and understanding. She laid her hand on Felipe's shoulder, "on second thought", she smiled for the first time in days, "perhaps we both need each other tonight - blow out the lamp and we'll go lie on my bed". Although they may not have yet comprehended that compassion for another is often the door to self - healing both Felipe and Mona were excellent examples of that principle in action.
To Be Continued - See Chapter Thirty-Eight
See Chapter One.

Tags

Anglican Church, Anglican Priest, Ashes To Ashes, August, Coffin, Dust To Dust, Funeral Service, Kingwell, Mourners, Newfoundland, Pallbearers, Rest In Peace, Sleep

Meet the author

author avatar Kingwell
I am 75 years old and retired.I like writing short stories, poetry as well other articles of interest.

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Comments

author avatar Sivaramakrishnan A
23rd Aug 2014 (#)

The compassion for each other shines through their relationship despite Mona's deep loss. Touching piece capturing the genuine emotions of all involved; a great write, thanks Kingwell - siva

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author avatar Kingwell
23rd Aug 2014 (#)

Thank you Siva, I appreciate your taking time to come here and read each chapter. Blessings.

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author avatar cnwriter..carolina
23rd Aug 2014 (#)

i love the underlying depth of caring that you have in this ..now am very curious what Felipe is going to share...thank you my friend...

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author avatar Kingwell
27th Aug 2014 (#)

Thank you Carolina for following as you do. Blessings.

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author avatar Delicia Powers
27th Aug 2014 (#)

Grief was made tender and tangible with your use of familiar sites and sounds...the evening approaching the shadows on the wall- the ticking of the iwind

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author avatar Delicia Powers
27th Aug 2014 (#)

up clock ...powerful mood and tone...great depth and feeling beautifully written Kingwell!!#

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author avatar Kingwell
27th Aug 2014 (#)

Delicia, I love the way you pick up on things like the clock and the lamp casting its shadow on the wall. It's a delight to write when others show such interest.

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