The sadness has returned to his voice again, I can hear the cracks in it even over the phone, a year later and they still break my heart.

A year since you lost your battle and we all still feel it, your absence felt most when the seasons change, yet your state does not.

It’s okay because I’ll be there soon, first I’ll make the journey of 130 miles which never really felt too far before, it does now when I am still not used to it being this way.

Then together, we will go a further 97 to see you once again and watch your spirit dance upon the spirit of the trees with their leaves falling to the ground upon you and the earth to which you will now be bound.

We’ll stand thinking of you and he will pray, I will wonder where you may be now and think of how it’s such a nice place for you to rest where the birds sing high above in the canopies, everyone equal in their barely marked areas and how I’ll never wear dark colours here not only because you wouldn’t want that but because despite the circumstance, it really is not that kind of place, it is filled with the life of Mother Nature herself, maybe she will keep your soul alive and carry it to me when I need you as a shooting star or blooming flower,

Your pain has gone, but we still carry ours for you, for that is what it is to be human, love and loss, joy and pain. For it is far less, shared between us and the other 120 who appeared at the church for you 17 days later. I found myself an innocent again, like a child amongst all these people, many of the strangers yet there was still a feeling of unity. I felt smaller somehow and like my dad was the tallest and strongest person I would ever know

where he gave a speech which I had helped him to create although it was entirely his, he read it although struggling at the end, he made it through and we were so proud, you would be too.

So now we gather one year on in your memory and it is as clear as the clouds in the sky that you are missing from us amongst the drinks and food and conversation but we feel safe in the knowledge that we are lucky to be the lives that you touched so significantly in your half a century here.

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