Haibun: Beach Sand

For Marian’s prompt at Toads, one word: muddy

Haibun: Beach
“I wonder if my first breath was as soul-stirring to my mother as her last breath was to me.” Lisa Goich-Andreadis

My mother and I were a lot alike. One thing – we both hated getting our feet muddy. Walking in the dry soil of the garden, striding across the lawn in the dew of early morning, skipping in the waves of the ocean and dodging inbound crabs in the sand – yes. But muddy feet? No.

When I was interring her ashes in her mother’s grave, I took a ziploc bag of North Carolina beach sand and put some into the hole I had dug. I poured in her ashes and then the rest of the sand. I patted it down firmly and placed several rocks on the place. Sweat dripped from my face like tears.
hot summer day –
buried in NC beach sand
that she loved dearly


24 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Margaret Elizabeth Bednar
    Jun 08, 2019 @ 22:37:41

    Well, that most amazing quote got to me. Had to pause and absorb it. Then your experiences so carefully thought out. A blessing to read. Thank you.


  2. Kerry
    Jun 09, 2019 @ 06:16:29

    How very touching that you gave the last gift of beach sand.


  3. Magaly Guerrero
    Jun 09, 2019 @ 07:05:28

    Love that your poem gives us a glimpse of how we keep those who are now gone, forever living–we never forget to remember who they were, to keep them close and safe and comfy… with a bit of sand, with the picture of the full moon (my little brother was afraid of the dark).


  4. Marian
    Jun 09, 2019 @ 09:12:12

    This is so tender, your mother joined with her mother.


  5. isadoragruye
    Jun 09, 2019 @ 11:03:53

    Thanks for sharing!


  6. Björn Rudberg (brudberg)
    Jun 09, 2019 @ 11:37:51

    I love how you protected your mother from the mud that she hated…


  7. larry trasciatti
    Jun 09, 2019 @ 12:38:29

    nice glimpse into a happy relationship


  8. Sherry Blue Sky
    Jun 09, 2019 @ 14:46:58

    Oh how beautiful, sad and tender……the beach sand in with your mother’s ashes. I am going to tell my daughter that I would like the same. Beach sand, and Pup’s ashes, with mine. What a beautiful idea. And I suspect there were tears along with the beads of sweat by the time you were done.


    • kanzensakura
      Jun 09, 2019 @ 17:04:40

      Yes there were tears. My mother didn’t eant anything fancy or mournful. She is interred in our family cemetery under a bunch of oak.yrees with a huge magnolia near by. Her grandmofher abd grabdfater, my father/her husband are all within touching distance. She loved our coast so much that I took a bag of sand I had held onto for years. Full of tiny shells and bits of shells. I eas gking to inter her cats’ ashes with her but the ground was so hard and stony. I will ho back and inter them in my fathers grave. He loved cats.

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  9. Mary
    Jun 09, 2019 @ 15:00:27

    This is sad, Toni, though very moving. It seems you provided your mother the perfect burial.


  10. gillena cox
    Jun 09, 2019 @ 16:56:12

    A beautiful tender haibun Toni. Happy Sunday



  11. Wendy Bourke
    Jun 09, 2019 @ 18:03:41

    This is so beautiful and poignant. Wonderful ~ eloquent ~ writing.


  12. Myrna
    Jun 09, 2019 @ 18:24:38

    I like this. It makes me appreciate how we tend to do things for our deceased loved ones, that actually make us feel better. These are lovely grief gestures and yours sounds very special.


  13. sanaarizvi
    Jun 09, 2019 @ 19:36:29

    This is incredibly touching, Toni .. the beach sand in with your mother’s ashes.


  14. magicalmysticalteacher
    Jun 09, 2019 @ 19:42:34

    Tender story! (I have yet to dispose of my father’s ashes—and he died 11 years ago!)


  15. oldegg
    Jun 09, 2019 @ 23:03:28

    How wonderful to be able to do something for her after death that she would be so pleased with. I did something similar with my own wifes ashes.


  16. Ayala Zarf
    Jun 10, 2019 @ 07:01:12

    So sad for your loss. A tender and beautiful poem. You did what she would love and that is always honorable. I remember trying to honor my parents and their wishes and it gave me a great peace that I did. It’s so hard to lose them.


  17. Susie Clevenger
    Jun 10, 2019 @ 17:02:04

    Oh my goodness, that got me from the quote to the ending. When I think of my mother, I am thankful she is finally at peace. It is so heartbreaking to lose a parent.


    • kanzensakura
      Jun 10, 2019 @ 18:58:29

      Yes it is. to watch them slowly dying, starving to death, their brains turning to mush….it is good that they are finally at peace but….the loss is terrible.


  18. Helen
    Jun 11, 2019 @ 13:08:34

    Incredibly moving …. thank you.


  19. Rosemary Nissen-Wade
    Jun 11, 2019 @ 21:50:52

    A touching story. And oh, that quote – my mother’s death (at which I was present) was the most confronting experience of my life. (Our most primal bond.)


    • kanzensakura
      Jun 11, 2019 @ 23:08:33

      Yes it is our most primal bond. I was at my mother’s death as well. It was the most singular and profound experience of ny life.

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