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Orange Crates

June 14, 2009

Orange Crates

Chloe Mansfield

For my Papa Chuck

I miss you Smity.

Every year my papa would send us a crate of oranges from Florida

Every year my mom,

my sister,

my dad,

my brother,

and I would savor every drop of the juice

Everything was fine

We would visit him, and when he smiled the room lit up

He was always happy

So we were happy

Then my papa started having problems with his heart

He was not the happy man, but more serious

He now smiled a half smile when he smiled

The half smile did not light the room

He would tell us that he was ok

That he would be fine, but i knew

Then he changed his mood

We visited him

And then his smile was bright as the sun

He knew what I had known and wanted me to be happy

Then, the day came

We were in the car and got the call

My mom started crying

We didn’t need to hear the conversation to know that Papa had died

A black empty hole started forming right in the middle of me

My sister started crying too, but my eyes were dry

The black hole was too consuming

It did not help me

It did not hurt me

It only was there existing inside of me

My mind reacted to the sadness by leaving my surroundings

I sat in silence

The grief started to consume my family

Only I had already moved past mourning

Only I was wondering how his journey was

Had he made it to his better place?

I pondered this the rest of the car ride

When we walked through the door

I walked into the kitchen

And I saw them

And a smile set into the corners of my mouth

There were papa’s oranges

fresh

Just delivered oranges

Papa had shown me a sign

He made it to his better place

Safe and sound

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