Funeral of the dead little boy


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The Writings of Bryan Edmondson (Fiction and Satire) (c) 2012

The Writings of Bryan Edmondson (Fiction and Satire) (c) 2012

The Writings of Bryan Edmondson (Fiction and Satire)  (c) 2012

The Maker of the “Mourning” Weather

Mother Nature, of course, is the Great Spirit who manages everything involved in creating and maintaining all of the interconnected forces that make up Nature on earth. It is a common misconception that she does this all by herself. Note that I said that she “manages” all of these things. Because there are millions of interconnected systems that are necessary to maintain Nature at all times and nurture the entire earth.

So Mother Nature employs many different Earth Spirits in order to get everything done. And there are countless different types of Earth Spirits on which she depends. Some take care of the deep flowing rivers, others crystal flowing streams, some the vast, salty frothed seas, others the jagged, snow peaked mountains, some raging volcanoes, those that make plants and animals rise and bloom, and there are even some that make round rocks roll down a hillside. There are so many Earth Spirits, and all the things they control would take years to explain.

What I want to tell you about are the Earth Spirits who are responsible for controlling the weather. Mother Nature calls these “Weather Sprites.”

 Weather Sprites are invisible to humans (But a rumor, states that some rare boys and girls can sense their presence and also hear them speak). If you could see a Weather Sprite you would notice that it is very similar to a beautiful young lady. Each has long silky hair, a beautiful flowing dress, the softest of skin, and all the other features of a lady.

Now Weather Sprites, for being the size of a maiden, can do extraordinary things. Weather Sprites can fly a great distance quickly; they can hover in mid-air, and they can float down to earth as well; but most of the time they live and work in the sky making the weather.

They have enough air in one breath to blow into a huge cloud, or create the moving winds. Weather Sprites also have magical powers allowing them to create summer showers, spring rains, dew in a meadow, misty rings around the sun, or a blanket of fog. They can create winter snow, hail, sleet, and frost. They can make cold fronts, warm fronts, and any other type of weather of which you can imagine.

They like to sleep on a cloud, but they also often float down to Earth. They may walk in a meadow and pick flowers, let birds light on their finger, or just run among the butterflies. But one would never know that they were there, because Weather Sprites do not leave any footprints.

Weather Spites control the weather in different locations all around the world. There are millions of locations in which Weather Sprites need to maintain the weather. And each Weather Sprite has her own tiny territory to control, and she works there alone. There are millions of Weather Sprites. But this is a story about only one single Weather Sprite, and her name was “Atmosphorina.”

Oh I almost forgot to tell you. Atmosphorina worked in a graveyard.

Atmosphorina was the Weather Sprite who controlled what the weather was going to be like for all burials at the “Garden of Remembrance Cemetery.” This was her job every single day.

Her proper job title was “Exterior decorator of funerary weather conditions.” And it was her job to take the elements, and fashion-tailor the weather conditions to create an appropriate outdoors ambience, one that attended to the particular emotional needs of the grief-stricken survivors. Her goal was to create a memorable and poignant experience, and to enhance the general dignity of the interment.

~~~~~~~~~~

It was a Morning in early October, and in the Funerary Business, that is the busy season. The Mortuary announced that there would be only one burial that day, but that it that was a particularly sad burial. So Atmosphorina wanted everything to be just so. She started her design by considering her sky. She knew the mood called for it to be somber and overcast—a dark gray. So she painted the sky, the color of wet ashes.

She next rolled out a high, puffy, expansive pall of clouds. She artfully saturated them heavily with moisture. Atmosphorina varied the moisture densities, in different parts of each cloud. This gave the long expanse of clouds an array of mottled, wet, splotches in sad, lonely colors.

Atmosphorina mixed shades of dreary gray; wet tarnished lead, dark aching slate, and the throbbing purplish dark shades of a black eye. Together these created the illusion that the clouds were pained and sorrowing; and their obvious moisture seemed as if they were empathetically holding back tears. Atmosphorina inspected the end result very carefully. She thought it was very appropriate for such a sad burial.

She then pursed her lips and exhaled a great breath making a high layer of frigid air in the sky, to surround the padded billows. This stratum of her icy, penetrating breath was far above the ground, so it would not to add the misery of cold to the bereaved loved ones. They would be standing outside in the cemetery, at the burial ceremony far below.

This sharp chill surrounded and infused the clouds, refrigerating them. And this prevented any moisture from condensing into droplets and falling. So in other words, it would not rain down on the grieving observants gathered below, standing around the open grave.

“It is very well done,” Atmosphorina told herself in humble pride.

To complete her final weather transformation, she needed to release some of the clouds’ moistness—but very carefully, and definitely not as rain. So she gently loosened some of the vapors in the dark billows. As she did this some of the humidity rolled out of the clouds. And it gently and slowly proceeded to descend upon the earth.

As the moisture gently touched the earth it flowed across the whole cemetery as a thick, white blanket of reverent fog. The thick misty haze was dream-like, it swathed the garden of remembrance, and it rolled over the many gravestones, caressing them.

The fog swirled about the burial ceremony; it gently wisped around the legs of the grieving loved ones standing around the open grave. A soft glow infused the air. The fog was a drowsy, safe blanket. It was a very calming entity. Atmosphorina was very happy with the end result. It was some of her best work with moisture.

Suddenly everyone standing around the grave looked into the white hanging veils of the fog. The mourners squinted at a dark mass coming in the glowing mist. Then they saw the pall bearers emerge from the fog. They carried the sad little casket towards the freshly dug grave.

Inside the small casket was the dead little boy. At the funeral, before they closed the coffin, everyone saw the boy’s eternal face. It was that of a sad little angel. The fog was very fitting. It grieved for the child with the loved ones. When Atmosphorina saw it all, it touched and humbled her.

She was grateful that she chose this particular rare type of fog. This heavy rolling mist she saved for only the saddest funerals. It helped the family cope with the death. It fostered dignity as thick haze which served to discretely muffle the sounds of much aggrieved sobbing. This day it maintained a tragedy and people’s ability to emotionally process their grief. It also helped subdue the inconsolable mother’s desperate wailing.

 As for the father, he was in too much denial to be mourning. He was determined to have his son back with him, even if that meant he had to slump the dead boy over his shoulder and carry him out of the cemetery. The haze gave his anger the dignity of privacy.

Then there was one glitch in Atmosphorina’s work; condensation formed into beads of water on the blades of grass in the graveyard. The polished shoes on the pall bearers’ feet were very wet. The moisture also gave the freshly dug earth the greasy look of mud. Both of these things she blamed on herself as carelessness. But they were not devastating mistakes.

Fortunately, a layer of wetness collected on the exterior of the casket. The coffin’s highly polished surface began to bead the liquid into small rounded pools on the lid. As the burial ceremony and prayers came to an end, each swollen circle of water became very heavy. Then one by one, they began to give way.

Each burst and released its water, which rolled off the top of the casket, and then divided into several streams. As the streams ran down the sides of the casket, each one narrowed to a thin line of liquid, which then beaded into a thread of rolling drops, which finally separated, and dripped off of the coffin. It was as if the coffin cried poignant tears and they then rolled down its face. Atmosphorina thought that this was a godsend, and she hoped that everyone was as touched by the effect as she.

Then the funeral director signaled that the casket be lowered into the grave. That was when Atmosphorina made her big mistake. Overcome with emotion, she broke the number one rule of the funerary burial ceremony code of behavior, “Never get emotionally involved on the job, stay respectfully observant from afar, but never get drawn into the grieving party’s grief.” It is not good to do this. Yet Atmosphorina could not help herself. She was so sad and wanted to comfort everyone.

She and her whole presence moved down upon the graveyard. She began to wrap herself around the mourning loved ones. Atmosphorina embraced their bodies, and felt them sobbing. She felt their bodies’ warmth. Atmosphorina then moved down into the grave to feel the casket with her palm. It had no warmth coming from within it.

Atmosphorina struggled to suppress her sounds of grief. But suddenly was overcome with anguished sadness for the dead little boy lying inside the coffin—the sad little angel with a sad little frown; Atmosphorina lightly sniveled. Then she took a deep breath, and she heaved out a long heavy sigh of despondency.

But Atmosphorina entirely forgot how very icy her breath was. And she unintentionally exhaled stinging chill into everyone standing around the grave. It numbed everyone to their bones. Atmosphorina’s heart was like a dam with a river of tears behind it, about to break.

She felt a warm swollen lump inside of her throat. An aching bulge filled with pain rolled over inside of it. She tried to swallow that lump. But she could not and tears pressed hard behind her eyes. With much effort she managed to choke back a sob, but a silent, unrepressed breath jerked and escaped through her nostrils. This time Atmosphorina exhaled even more frigid air than the first. She felt a piercing twinge of panic shoot through her.

She quickly looked about the burial area, and then about the whole cemetery. The immense cloud of foggy shrouds in the air now lay on the ground frozen. Atmosphorina’s second breath covered everything in sight with an icy frost. A frigid white layer of ice-crystals covered the mourners’ black clothes. There were crystals of ice in some people’s hair. The artic chill froze the surrounding grounds and the wet dew-covered blades of grass into fragile shards of ice.

She felt a sudden despair as heavy as the earth pulling down inside her. Then she looked down into the grave, and Atmosphorina felt her heart tear in half. To her horror there was a solid sheet of ice frozen to the top of the coffin. And a rough layer of frost covered this ice.

This eerie biting cold was ill-omened. And it multiplied the anguish of all the loved ones’ grieving. They were appalled as they looked down into the black maw of the grave. They saw the layer of ice and frost clinging like death to the small coffin; and in their mind’s eye they saw the dead body lying inside. The skin was powder-white. The body had the eternal stillness and the lifeless chill of alabaster.

He was beyond reaching now, down at the bottom of the grave, lying in his cold little coffin completely alone. The little angelic face frowned up at them. This sight was a sharp blade of anguish thrust into their souls. Drained of spirit, the loved ones’ all despaired.

Atmosphorina became frantic when she realized what she had done to everything. And the grieving loved ones’ hearts ached as they pumped heavily, to move dark, thick, utter desolation through their veins.

Atmosphorina then without hope, was helpless to do anything but sit and watch everything unfold. Two dozen sets of teeth began to chatter. Soon chilled bodies in frost covered clothes began to shake uncontrollably. Each suffering soul wrapped their arms around their torso, and pulled their shoulders in tight. Chins quickly dropped and pressed into the soft spot on the front of the neck seeking warmth.

The women pulled the collars of their coats high and held them tightly around their ears and noses. No one could think about anything except how miserably cold they were.

Children’s snotty noses began to run thick lines of mucus down little rosy cheeked faces, but there were no handkerchiefs, so naturally they all used their sleeves. Mothers jerked them by the arm in anger. The children whined in self-pity. Fathers gave them a harsh look to shut them up. The children resentfully quieted.

There was silence, and all their minds registered were the piercing bite of the cold and the wind. It was all utterly unendurable.

Then a baby suddenly exploded in ejaculations of irrepressible shrieking. Everyone winced; the splitting sound produced instant sharp, stabbing headaches in everyone’s head. Ear lobes that were purple were so cold that they burned as it they were too close to a fire. No one could think. They just wanted this all to end.

They wanted to be somewhere far away, any place, just not where they were now.

No one even thought about the dark silent grave and the sad little boy still lying there at the bottom, eternally still, and utterly alone in his sad little iced over coffin.

The little boy’s burial was absolutely ruined. And Atmosphorina knew that it was entirely her fault. A part of Atmosphorina died inside at that moment. She was thinking only about the boy. And Atmosphorina saw that everyone around the grave was too miserable, and too worn-out to care about the boy any longer.

She sat silently and she watched as each person grabbed a hand full of greasy wet sod, and then discarded it into the dark open grave. It sounded in dull thumps as each wet lump fell on the lid of the little boy’s casket. One by one, each of the people then stamped away towards the parking lot. The frozen blades of grass crunched and broke like glass under their feet. Exasperated breaths discharged from flared nostrils, leaving white streams of steam in the cold air.

Frozen car doors whined as fathers pulled them open. Ignition keys were turned; each of the cars’ starters slowly labored as it turned over, and men yelled, “Come on!” at their engines, and slapped their palm against the steering wheel. The engines did not start. Then finally, after a few tries, one by one, each engine sputtered, knocked, and finally started. And the tail pipes quavered and chugged out puffs of thick white smoke; these puffs collected in a rising smoky cloud behind the cars. The clouds boiled, rolled, ascended, and thinned.

Each car backed out, paused, the gears shifted, and one by one, each car full of passengers slowly chugged out of the icy parking lot. The tires rolled, and the frost crunched underneath them.

Every single car was freezing cold inside; the seats numbed everyone’s legs, draining them of heat. Teeth chattered uncontrollably as people waited for their car’s heater to warm up the car.

All the windows bean to fog up on the inside from their warm breath. Windshield wipers were useless. Men cursed and rubbed the front windshield with the arm of their sleeve, just trying to rub open a clear spot big enough, so they could see the road to drive.

Everyone who left the burial ceremonial due to the bitter cold was still just as cold. Everyone was totally miserable. Fathers and Mothers fought on the way home. They yelled quarreled about trivial things that they were not really even mad about.

Children in the back seats sat very quietly and were very nervous. They knew better than to make a single complaint. Each kept their sleeves at their sides; and they let their noses run down their faces. They grimaced when the thick, cold snot ran down over their upper lips. They could taste the salty mucous. They dared not wipe them so they licked their upper lips and each child swallowed it in disgust and humiliation.

Amidst all the parents’ loud yelling up front, the children in the back seat secretly stole looks at their siblings; they each saw that the other was just as scared. And the children did not make a peep.

~~~~~~~~~~

Back at the grave yard, Atmosphorina still stood beside the boy’s grave. Her head was turned and her eyes stared towards the empty parking lot, but they focused on nothing. Atmosphorina was deep within the inky void of her mind. All that she saw in that murky emptiness was the face of the sad little angel frowning. Her face was fallen and forlorn. And Atmosphorina knew that this day she made the most horrific catastrophe that she ever made out of anything.

Her eyes were soft and large; but there was infinite heaviness in them. Silence bathed them. And they had an absolute stillness, the type which only comes with permanent defeat.

In a short while, Atmosphorina heard the grumbles of a bright-yellow, Caterpillar Back-hoe. She watched as it rumbled toward the boy’s grave. The metal beast pronounced its presence with a spluttering grumble. It exhaled thick, black lungsful of diesel smoke, as it came right up to, and then crept around beside the open grave.

Atmosphorina watched and listened as the one-armed, metal monster lifted its articulated arm, opened its elbow, and then swung the long yellow appendage round in the air. The yellow beast’s mechanical arm moved high above the mound of earth piled-up next to the grave. Then it flexed its claw-scoop of a hand at the wrist, and plunged its arm and claw down into the mound of dirt. The living metal being scooped a hand full of piled-up earth from the mound.

The bright-yellow animal then lifted its arm and took the scoop of earth around to the open grave. The claw opened and let loose its handful of dirt over to open pit. The earth fell and it filled in the bottom of the grave, rising half way up the coffins height.

Atmosphorina stared at the coffin intensely one last time, taking in the view of the boy’s sad little frost-covered, coffin. She wanted to hold a picture of it deep in her memories. The yellow arm swung back to the mound of dirt, and grabbed yet another claw-full of soil. She watched as the animal’s single, yellow arm and claw came back again.

Atmosphorina stared as the second measure of dirt fell into the grave. The powder filled in all around the corners sorrowful little coffin and then scattered over the top of it, spreading across its lid. The crushed dirt almost covered the coffin completely, like a pall of earth. She could only see sparse, mottled, patches of color, from the lid of the coffin. These colors revealed by open spots in the powdered silt, where the earth did not completely spill over.

Atmosphorina turned her head away when the arm came the third time. She closed her eyes. She kept them closed as the arm came again several more times. Then she heard loud banging and deep, drubbing thuds. She knew the bright yellow gravedigger was pounding the back of its metal fist against the mound of sod.

It was in a hurry to finish with this grave and tramp the soil down as close to level as it could. It wanted finished the job and leave. She still had her eyes shut after the back-hoe was finished. She heard the animal’s engine growl and surge. A huge column of black smoke sputtered out the vertical pipe.

Atmosphorina grimaced. She coughed and she gagged. She accidentally inhaled some of the thick, black, diesel smoke through her nostrils. Its aftertaste lingered as an acrid burning, in the back of her throat.

Then the yellow, one-armed malcontent just turned its back on the grave—without first paying its respects to the dead boy it so hastily buried. It did so injudiciously, without good manners, and proceeded to make belches, grumbles, and a visceral sputtering. Then it lumbered away from the grave-site, ripping up divots, and it heading towards the horizon.

Atmosphorina kept her eyes shut and listened until the yellow beast was far away. The sounds of its rumbling and growls slowly grew softer. In a short while the only sound left was a diminishing tinkling sound—like a straight pin rattling in the bottom of an empty coffee can. Then there was only silence and the animal, which was the size of a speck, then disappeared into the horizon.

Atmosphorina finally opened her eyes. Her face sunk as she looked at the fresh dirt mounded over the grave. It made her heart heavy to know that she would never see the boy’s coffin again. There was no one left in the vast graveyard anywhere—there was only she, next to the boy lying deep underneath the dirt.

Atmosphorina rebuked herself and then sunk into an abysmal remorse. She felt that there was no way that she could ever atone for her transgression. But there was one thing that she realized she could do. So she resolved to stay alone with the lifeless boy. She sat down beside his grave to comfort the buried body. Atmosphorina sat mourning, silently feeling his presence, connected with him, comforting him—shepherding him.

She gently laid the palm of her hand on top of the fresh sod of his new grave. She directed heat down her arm and into her palm, to give warmth the grave of the little boy. She wished that there was a way to melt the ice on top of his sad little casket. She sat with her warm hand resting it there on top of the new grave. Tears welled in her eyes. Her heart wounded, as she pictured the lifeless little boy covered up six feet beneath her hand.

Atmosphorina felt completely broken. She sighed. It got even frostier. She wanted it all to be a bad dream. But it was not a dream. It was worse. It was real.

Atmosphorina still had her warm palm on the grave. Then unconsciously, and lovingly, she gently patted the grave a few times. It was a lot like a mother, who holds her sleeping baby against her bosom, and without thinking pats the slumbering infant on its bottom to comfort it—and comfort herself as well. Atmosphorina was not even aware of this action. She just did it.

As Atmosphorina palmed the grave, she did not merely feel the earth, she felt the boy, and she felt his soul; she felt such emotional absorption. She felt such…love for the boy. Yes, it was undeniably love.

She gently returned her hand to rest, and laid the warm, consoling palm back down against the soft earth of burial mound. She beheld at the grave as she sat by it in silence. She had such a strong sense of connection to the boy. She could feel him, as if she knew him his entire short life. She did not know his name, because there were not yet engravings on the headstone, due to the haste of the funeral. But this did not change a thing for Atmosphorina.

Atmosphorina thought to herself, “What is a name, what is its significance, really? When you know someone, when you can feel their soul?” She would be of course be interested in knowing his name, but then she then thought, “A name compared to love and such a connection, pales in comparison. It does not matter that I do not know his name right now. And when the headstone is engraved—he will still be this boy whom I already know.”

 Atmosphorina kept her palm on top of the boy; she never moved it, except when occasionally lifting it to pat his grave again. Then she always laid her warm palm back on top of the boy. She stayed with the boy, never moving, until the Sun finally went down.

Atmosphorina was about to leave, reluctantly, but then she noticed something strange. Night was over the graveyard, but there was only darkness. There was no moon or stars to give light. Then she realized it was her clouds obscuring the celestial lights. It was right for her to leave the boy’s grave with the heavens like that. Not in total darkness. 

So Atmosphorina stayed and undertook to sit with him there throughout the night; she could not bear to leave the boy. And so she kept vigil. Atmosphorina slowly swiped her hand outwards across the earth, then brought it back, feeling the soft silt brush against her palm. She looked down at the boy and thought for a long moment.

She parted her lips to speak, but then she paused. She thought about what she wanted to say to the boy, and exactly how she wanted to say it. Then she very gently spoke to the grave. “Your family loves you very much.” Atmosphorina paused, then she said, “It is important that you understand that nobody left you.”

She continued, “Your loved ones were only upset with me— because I made a terrible mistake with the cold.” She paused, searching for just the right words.  

“I did not mean to make everyone and everything so dreadfully covered in frost; I hate myself for making ice shell over atop of your coffin. It was a horrible accident.”

 She implored herself for the best words, “By doing all of this, I pushed everyone farther than they could bend. I broke them, dear. And it made them so upset that they weren’t thinking straight.” Atmosphorina swallowed at that aching lump. “I am so, so sorry, my sweet child.” She stopped talking and became awash in contemplation.

She laid both of her palms on the grave, and ran them across the silt feeling it move underneath her hands again. Then she kneeled down to softly speak to the grave. “Dear boy, please listen to me.” Atmosphorina said tenderly. “Your family did not forget about you. They will never forget about you.”

Atmosphorina resumed, “All of you are one family. Even if you must stay here, you are still all one family.” She felt that lump in her throat still, now it was swollen and throbbing as it curled inside. She choked back tears because she did not want to make the boy sad or confuse him.

 “Your family will come back to visit you. I promise. They will visit you a lot.” She repeated it, barely whispering it, slowly making the words with her lips “They will visit you a lot.” She patted the grave, and looked upwards, pushing for the words in profound thought.

Looking back down at the grave Atmosphorina said, “And every day, every single day, whether your family can come to visit, or not, I will always be here with you. I promise.” She reassured him “And I will never, ever leave. I will never miss one day”

 “Remember, you and your family, and I will always one family, together with you…One family together forever.”

Atmosphorina bent down and laid the side of the cheek on the earth that buried him. She breathed in a long, slow, deep breath. She lifted her head, kissed the soil on top of his burial place very gently. She sat back up and laid her hand on the earth. She looked at the boy’s grave. She whispered, “Go to sleep little boy. I am going to be here with you. You rest now.”

Atmosphorina patted the grave for a while. Then for the first time she smiled. Atmosphorina laid her still palm on top of him and sat silently. She kept him company all night long.She sat with the boy until the sun finally began to come up behind the horizon—gilding its edge in golden light.  

She stayed with the boy until the sun warmed the earth. Only then did she feel that it was o.k. to leave the boy to go home, knowing the sun brought warmth for the boy’s grave. The Sun also burned away most of the funeral clouds Atmosphorina made the previous day for the burial ceremony.

Atmosphorina patted the boy’s grave one last time. She kneeled down and she kissed the earth, so very softly, so very gently touching it with her lips. They touched it with the delicacy of a butterfly’s wing. She brushed the soil with her eyelashes, just barely, and pretended they were caressing the closed eyes the boy.

Then Atmosphorina stood up. And she ascended upwards into the sky; to sleep on a large, warm, heavily saturated rain cloud. The Sun intentionally left the warm moist rain cloud for Atmosphorina. Somehow he knew why she needed it.

 When she got to the billowed bed, she was very pained, overcome with heart-rending sorrow. Now that she was not attending to the boy, not comforting him, not being with him—she was void. And the finality of the boy’s death, the loss, the eternal stillness of the body—it finally hit all hit her at once.

She fell upon her cloud, and lay face-down, burying herself deeply into it. And that is when Atmosphorina finally let herself let go and she began to cry. She cried very hard for a very long time. Rain fell down upon the earth for as far as she could see in all directions. The tears glistened as they fell, they looked like diamonds in the sunlight, and they covered the boy’s grave in jewels of sadness. It was a good, hard, healing rain. Finally Atmosphorina cried herself out.

She was suddenly completely exhausted. She swiftly fell into a very deep sleep. And Atmosphorina dreamt while she slept. She dreamt about the sad little angel with the sad little face that frowned. But the dream was not as one might expect; it was not a bad dream.

She dreamt a wonderful dream. She envisioned she was back at the Cemetery visiting the boy’s grave. She stood before it. In that moment Atmosphorina looked down at his grave. And this time she did not see earth covering the boy’s coffin. She looked right down into it.

She saw the boy lying in his casket; he was visible in the open grave, as the coffin was clear like his small body was inside a box of glass. She clearly saw the small boy lying there. His hair was the color of lemons. He had an impossibly un-tamable cowlick. It was like splinters His body was not powder white any more. They little boy’s face had color in his cheeks. His flesh was healthy and soft as children’s skin always is.

In this wonderful dream Atmosphorina saw the boy yawn deeply. In this vision the boy awakened. He took his small hands and curled into little balls. They rubbed at his eyes. He yawned again and he opened his soft small hands. Little fingers scrubbed at his eyes.

Then in her dream she saw them—the big round, sleepy eyes. They slowly opened; the sun gently bathed them in soft light. The eyes were a turquoise blue. His eyes tried to focus. He did not seem to know where he was.

As he became more conscious his young mind slowly realized that he was alone inside a coffin. The boy then realized that he died while skating on that icy pond. He remembered the crack of the ice and the cutting icy water surrounding him as he sank. He recalled a moment of terrible panic. The last thing he could remember was looking up at the sheet of translucent ice, and feeling a tremendous sense of peace, as he very became sleepy, felt warm all over and then his vision faded to black.

The boy inside his coffin was curious; he looked around at the box of glass. He knew he was all alone in his coffin. And yet he was not afraid. He felt utterly safe and peaceful at something.

 Atmosphorina experienced an immense revelation. It was resplendent—the miracle, the blessing, the joy.

In her dream the dead boy was alive.

Atmosphorina was so joyous that is frightened her. But the boy did not see her standing above the open grave looking down at him. She thought he may be incapable of seeing her by the workings of providence. Tears ran down her cheeks. Several tears pattered as they splashed on the top of the glass coffin.

Suddenly the boy looked up, and then lifted his hand and pressed a small pink palm against the glad lid of his coffin. She quickly wiped her eyes of her tears so she could see clearly. Atmosphorina saw the tiny hand with its splayed fingers pressed against the glass.

She quickly looked to see the sad little angel and his sad little face. She only saw two blue eyes looking up at her. She cupped her hands against her mouth gasping in disbelief. The sad little angel was looking up at Atmosphorina.

And when he saw her, he knew who she was. How could she be sure?

The boy was smiling.

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