It’s alright, lean on me.
I won’t let you fall.
We walk slowly toward the flowers, our steps getting smaller and smaller.
The large box seems so harmless. The red, white, and blue colors so vivid and sharp against first the gray stainless steel then the deep green.
I feel your sharp intake of breath when you first see his face. Perhaps until that moment you thought there had been a mistake. I feel your body shudder as you cross the threshold of hope into pain, despair, and darkness. There was no mistake.
This is a defining moment in your life. The moment he went from being your friend, lover, and soul mate to when he became your past.
He served honorably, paid the ultimate sacrifice. No words can comfort you now so I don’t even try. He was my brother in service, a kindred spirit that I will never meet but know so well. His service and his sacrifice will never be forgotten.
We turn to sit. I feel your knees buckle, unable to hold up such an immense burden of loss, pain, sorrow.
It’s alright, lean on me. I won’t let you fall.