Sunday, September 10, 2006

Cross to Wear

He wore the cross around his neck for 4 years in WWII. When he died, several years after the war, she wanted him to be buried with it. The funeral home did not allow anyone to be buried with jewelry on, so she took the gold cross that hung around her husband’s neck and she put in on. She wore it proudly and sorrowfully for over 40 years.

Gold and gleaming and on a delicate chain, it always hung outside her shirt. It reminded her of him. He was a milliner and an Italian. And according to my Great-Aunt he was as equally courageous as he was charismatic. She believed that his cross shielded her from harm, like his hand placed always over her heart.

My Great-Aunt broke her hip the other day and was rushed to the hospital and then subsequently shuffled from room to bleak and lonely room and stripped of her clothes. She speaks with a charming French accent but can be as virulent as a scorpion with her quick wit. She is 96. People like to write her off as “confused” because it is easier to cope with her difficult personality.

I went to see her the other day in the hospital and she is in pain physically, but not as much pain as she seems to be emotionally. Tears welled up in her already watery old gray eyes. The hospital staff lost her cross. It is nowhere.

This made me awfully sad. There is a blemish on the orb of sentimentality and old romanticism that embraces our blue earth.


  1. Thats so sad, i hope they find it...

    This world is never quite perfect, even when it is at its best.

  2. Thanks Paul, I hope they find it too.

  3. Oh my dear, that made me cry. How sad. I really hope they find it. And that she gets well soon.