It’s another sad day with the loss of a beloved friend’s mother, the ache made keener by the need to honour a difficult request. People react to grief in different ways, sometimes in ways that demand much of those who love us, turning sorrow into a test of a long friendship that must not fail.

I took a long walk tonight in the mature woods behind my home. Something about the old trees did much to soothe me, the solidity of the trunks, the knuckles of roots plunging deep in the earth, the delicate whispering of leaves in the breeze. Rooted, strong, standing firm through difficult seasons and terrible storms.