We none of us live forever, but there are people we expect to Be, to remain. To continue. When we lose them to the one thing we all have in common, it does not seem possible, because they were More. More than us, more than individuals. More than death.
When I was learning myself in college, one of the many times I have met me, Adrienne Rich was one of the tour guides, pointing out important artifacts along the way. Pieces of oppression, bits of victory, nouns placed unnaturally and precisely adjacent to their verbs. The poetry and prose of a journey, documented just, it seemed, for me.
I still have all I ever knew of her, in dog-eared, marked-up books, and these will remain; they will continue. What we who were not her family and friends have lost is possibility and the knowledge that she was still out there creating, striving, observing, and recording.
My heart and thoughts go out to those who knew and loved her.
My sadness is deep, and so is my gratitude.