But, next time I do visit I’ll bring my Kirk a hamburger with ketchup and pickles, my mom a shrimp cocktail, a Manhattan or margarita- even a good cuppa joe with lots of cream and sugar. Johnny, my brother who was killed way too young by a drunk, would like a hamburger also and a coke. Grampa gets a big piece of chocolate cake in a bowl with milk poured over it. I’ll sing You Are My Sunshine to my baby, Robin, just as I would have done if I had been allowed to hold him before he flew away. I’m looking forward to a conversion with Grandma Emma who died before I was born but whose untimely death at age 53 came alive for me in mom’s diary. The folks in Foxburg may think I’m worshiping the devil when they see the smoke from the incense needed to beckon the spirits, but then again, they may want to join our party. Oh yes, Sophie who rests in my friend David’s garden in Tehachapi will have a fresh bone. I won’t do as much dancing as I did here at XOXO, the village I partied with last night under a full moon. Maybe a little-but not enough to draw attention.
So, here in Mexico the dead are honored for a full weekend. Whole families including babies in arms and grandmas’ in wheelchairs wrapped in rebozos, come together to decorate and remember their relatives. Many hold a vigil the entire night because there is much to catch up on. It is quality time.
A poster I saw announced a performance with the words: Viva la Muerte
Maybe it means live the dead or life to the dead, I’m not exactly sure but I know it isn’t a contradiction, it’s a commitment. One worth keeping.