Bleh with Barry

Random with a cynical twist of lime.

Posts Tagged ‘death

Thinking on Death and What One Leaves Behind

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My grandmother passed away recently. She was a great woman who helped raise me and my cousins when we were children, and she has continued to touch my life even after I grew up and didn’t have as much interaction with her as I did then. After a five year battle with cancer, she passed away having seen all her sisters, children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren, and many nieces and nephews. She leaves behind a legacy that will continue on for a long time to come.

When she planned her funeral, she made it very traditional. She knew exactly what she wanted and had the services carried out in the way that she saw fit. So she went out on her own terms even as she planned them. We even had a laugh at the graveside when we realized that she was late to her own funeral as she and we had said that she would be. She was buried like many people are, and now, there will be a grave that we will visit every year like we do the rest of my grandparents and relatives that have gone on.

However, I find this problematic on so many levels as this sets up a shrine that many will go to to remember her. This is the notion that always makes me a little antsy and causes me to have scruples about what I want when I ultimately go through that process that we all have to. I will tell you that I don’t want people to feel obligated to go to a place and visit me. I don’t want anything like this. I want people to remember me in the small things: a kiss we shared, a laugh, a song we sang too loudly in the car, a judgmental look, whatever it may be. I want it to creep up on them and for them to find themselves suddenly taken with it. Now, this doesn’t mean that I want people to cry (although I know that some might… I’m pretty sure that one of my sisters would if she read this right now), but if that’s the way one reacts, then, they should do it then.

But why I’m writing this now, other than trying to find some catharsis in my grandmother’s loss, is that a student video from Dorian Lebherz & Daniel Titz, two film students, came across my Facebook feed. It is a student directed advertisement for Johnnie Walker Whisky, but it is a beautiful thing. The sentiment is beautiful and is captured in the direction and acting within it. However, the most beautiful part might be the poem voiced-over the entire piece, a poem written by Dorian Lebherz & Daniel Titz and John Reilly:

“Walking the roads of our youth

through the land of our childhood, our home and our truth

Be near me, guide me

always stay beside me so i can be free, free

Lets roam this place

familiar and vast

our playground of green frames, our past

We were wanderers

never lost, always home

When every place was fenceless

and time was endless

our ways were always the same

Cool my demons and walk with me brother

until our roads lead us away from each other

and if your heart’s full of sorrow, keep walking, don’t rest

and promise me from heart to chest

to never let your memories die, never

I will always be alive and by your side,

in your mind

I’m free”

As I write this now, I find myself crying a little, which is big if you know me. There is just something here that touches on everything that I’m thinking and feeling right now. So I hope this doesn’t bum you out too much, but this is just lovely.

 

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Donna Summer the Disco Queen: Her “Last Dance”

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I know that at this point Donna Summer’s death has spread across the nation. No one expected her to die from lung cancer at the age of 63, especially since she has been performing as recently as 2010. However, growing up with a mother that loved 70’s and 80’s music as much as anyone could, I hold a special place in my heart for her music. She was a talented woman with one hell of a voice. From her disco hits to her more rocktastic numbers, she will be remembered for her powerful vocals and her catchy tunes. She elicited an air of loveliness, class, and down to earth demeanor that only she had the capability of doing, so I leave you with some of her music in memory of her.

Written by barryr22

May 23, 2012 at 10:48 pm

Where Do Broken Hearts Go: R. I. P. Whitney

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Regardless of how she died (and I’m sure people are already speculating), Whitney Houston, a great talent and a larger than life individual, has been lost to the world of music at the age of 48 long before we thought that we would see her go. Bursting onto the music scene in the 80’s, continuing strongly into the 90’s, and planning a comeback tour in recent memory, Houston belted out songs and sang somber melodies that touched our hearts and our souls. From “Saving All My Love For You” and “How Will I Know” to “I Wanna Dance with Somebody” and her biggest hit “I Will Always Love You,” Whitney showed us how dynamic of a performer and celebrity that she was… We all know that she battled with addiction in recent memory, but I feel as though we should celebrate the beauty of her life and not her failings. For her memory, I think Whitney says it best with her hit “Where to Broken Hearts Go”

Where do broken hearts go
Can they find their way home
Back to the open arms
Of a love that’s waiting there
And if somebody loves you
Won’t they always love you
I look in your eyes
And I know that you still care, for me.

While it is a love song, I hope that Whitney can find her “way home” to rest even as we reel from the shock of her loss.

Written by barryr22

February 11, 2012 at 10:31 pm

Defiance

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From the Lake,

Sunlight hurts my

Eyes, causing them to

Drip tears and blood.

*

Yet, I do not care

Fore I feel again.

*

Lavender blossoms

Fragrance the air that

I inhale deeply, and my

Throat closes at its intrusion.

*

However, I smell them

Clean and bright without water.

*

My flesh burns from

Lack of heat upon my

Skin for ages, the water

Acted as my shield.

*

Still, my soul feels

Alive as my body sizzles.

*

I have waited an

Eon in darkness. Now, I

Walk briefly in a light that

Is Not You.

*

A sudden weight seems lifted as I

Die, no longer a slave to you,

My Ardor.

Written by barryr22

October 5, 2011 at 11:13 pm

Posted in Poetry

Tagged with , , , ,

Castlevania Lords of Shadow: Afterthoughts *Spoiler Alerts*

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So, I finished the game just hours ago, and I think that I’m going to stick by my previous statements about the game. It’s overall good control-wise and the look of the game is exquisite. Some things were annoying, but I’ll just direct you to my previous blog to deal with these issues. This blog post will be dealing mainly with the story of the game and the possible ramifications of said story. For anyone reading this who might be interested in playing *SPOILER ALERT* from this point on.

So, the end of the game you find out that the main person who’s been helping you the whole game is actually using you as a puppet to assemble his own powerful mask…however, he is being played by none other than Satan himself.  Well, Gabriel, our hero, gets brought back from beyond the grave to stop Satan…epic battle ensues…Gabriel wins (of course) and finds out that the God mask does not truly bring the dead back and that he will never be able to be with his Marie again (tear jerking ending)…*sigh*…however, that’s not the complete ending. If you watch after the credits, you find out that Gabriel has become…*dum, dum, dum*…Dracula, and Zobek (the helper from earlier) is seeking you out to fight against Satan again…also, did I mention this is taking place almost a millenia after the original story?

So, basically, what does all of this mean for the game in general? Well, like I said, it’s a pretty good game. But what does Gabriel becoming Dracula mean? For me, it means one of two things. One, this game is supposed to be a game explaining the birth of Dracula into the Castlevania universe. However, there is a big flaw with this in my mind. The Dracula he is seems nothing like the one from the other games…so, yeah. The second option and possibly the more logical is that Castlevania Lords of Shadow is a reboot of the franchise, and it’s about to get really interesting…

So, I would say to the die-hard fans out there it’s worth a play but expect to scratch your head a little…I just wonder if the next game will continue with this story or if it will go in a completely different direction…

Written by barryr22

December 14, 2010 at 8:53 pm

Living

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Daily, I battle

The tempest trying to

Blow my spirit into

Submission.

It takes me by

Surprise and sucks the

Wind out of my chilled

Lungs.

Drowning on the land, it’s

Harder to breathe

Sleeping in a bed of

Squalor.

Slowly hands touch,

Lips meet, a run of electricity

Up my spine

Shooting.

Emptiness cannot be

Voided by this

Illusion playing…

Lying.

Written by barryr22

November 3, 2010 at 1:22 am

Posted in Poetry

Tagged with , , , , , , ,

Out, Out Brief Candle

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The Serenity Prayer
God, grant me the courage to change the things I can;
the serenity to accept the things I cannot change;
and the wisdom to know the difference;
living one day at a time, enjoying one moment at a time,
accepting hardship as a pathway to peace, taking, as Jesus did,
this sinful world as it is, not as I would have it;
trusting that You will make all things right if I surrender to Your will
so that I may be reasonably happy in this life
and supremely happy with You forever in the next. Amen
– Reinhold Niebuhr

Once again in my life, I am reminded of how precious life is and how quickly it can be taken away. Over the weekend, one of my students was involved in a car accident. She and one of her friends were driving down the highway when they went off the road and struck a tree. My student was pronounced dead at the scene and her friend was taken by life-flight to a local hospital. Neither girl was wearing a seat belt…I found out Monday morning when a student told me about it.

I was shocked. It’s so strange to me that someone can be sitting in your class one day and be gone several days later. As I’ve told others, I know that life is a fleeting thing. Still, it’s such a disjointed and weird feeling. Honestly, I didn’t know this student that well, but she seemed like a sweet girl. The conversations that I did have with her were pleasant, and she was always smiling. Now, she’s somewhere else. . .or maybe not (who knows?). I just know that I pray for her family and friends in this difficult time. There’s nothing in the world that can compare to the loss of a friend, sister, child, etc.

They leave a hole that each of us try to fill in some way….it’s a hard thing…as I sit here writing this, I find myself tearing up because I’m thinking about the empty space that I’ll see in my class the rest of the semester. This will be a hole that I have to deal with… I can’t imagine what her family is going through.  

  So, while I won’t mention her name here, I hope that my blog readers will pray for her family too. I leave you with a Moses Hogan Song “We Shall Walk Through the Valley in Peace” which I think is appropriate for this situation.

Written by barryr22

November 3, 2010 at 1:11 am