Time wounds all heals
Anger grows in the idle mind
Pain festers, thoughts meld
Life death, love kills
Love Kills M.S. 1987
Actually I have just remember that I have forgotten to mention something important. Well it’s important to me anyway. I know in these words I have already suggested that there was a few significant occasions in my sixteen years that shaped me into who I am and whether anyone else out there actually believes that is not really a concern of mine. However it would be remiss of me not to mention one more of those events, an event so painful, yet so powerful that it lead me to resign and offer to leave Steve’s house in the first place.
As I mentioned on Wednesday August 20 I handed in my resignation adding to my life another Wednesday of significance but it was actually the Thursday before that was the catalyst of everything that I knew at the time changing. You see on Thursday August 14 it was the one year anniversary of the death of my brother.
Despite not getting home until 3am that morning I slept only briefly, ignoring my guitar and everything else, and was up again by 6:30am. There was no breakfast, no coffee and no relaxing with a newspaper as many people did each morning. I just grabbed my smokes, several rollies were inside the packet, my wallet and a jacket then I headed out the door.
Of course I was starving twenty minutes after leaving the house I and found myself looking for an early morning cafe, which were not as prominent in the suburbs of Adelaide in 1986 as they are now but I did find one. After satisfying my hunger, which I think was also laced a little but with nerves I made a bee line for the nearest bus stop and jumped on the number 86 bus. I rode that bus for nearly forty minutes as it looped around the streets but I knew exactly where it was going and when I finally got off it I was standing across the road from the cemetery where Herod was buried.
I had not, been to the grave sight, at least I couldn’t remember being there and my mind told me that it was one of the things my father stopped me doing so I assumed that was right. With no idea where the grave was I began to wander the graveyard looking at headstones, reading names and in some cases reading the short but often painful story that was craved into the stone.
There was very few people around at such an early hour of the day but after about twenty minutes of walking around I was approached by a man I assumed due to his overalls and work boots to be the groundskeeper.
“Looking for someone son?” the man in his forties with salt and pepper coloured hair and a beard asked me.
“My brother.” I said without thinking that he would need a name.
“What’s his name. I might be able to help, I work here.”
The way the man spoke in the present tense should probably have given me some reassurance that the man respected the dead and where he was, but really it just felt weird.
“Herod, Herod St…” I stopped myself immediately. I’d been calling myself Stone for nearly a year and it had obviously stuck in my head. “Sorry, his name his Herod Wentworth, he died a year ago today.”
The older man scratched his beard as if he was in thought then said. “Sorry son, I don’t know of any Herod Wentworth.” There was a pause long enough for my heart to sink as if it knew something worse was coming, then he said. “I have just been cleaning up around a grave sight for Reginald Wentworth the third. He died a year ago because the family are having a memorial for him today.”
“Reginald Wentworth?” I questioned.
“Yes, the third. But not Herod. That was who you said wasn’t it?” I nodded unsure of what to say next. “Well I’d definitely remember that name and there is no other plots with the surname of Wentworth. Perhaps you have the wrong cemetery?”
“Maybe I do,” I said mumbling the words more than I spoke them. “Would you mind directing me to where Reginald Wentworth is buried, I wouldn’t mind seeing it for myself, they might be relatives I don’t know about.”
“Sure would be a strange coincidence to have them both die on the same day. But sure, if you follow this road down and around to the right, then at the first crossroads you reach turn left the grave is about fifty metres down on the left.” At the same time as he spoke he waved his right hand in the direction he intended for me to go.
“Thank you sir. Your assistance is appreciated.” I said.
I think the groundskeeper, whose name I never got, or don’t remember, was a bit surprised to see a young boy with ruffled, almost unkempt hair, jeans and a rough and faded denim jacket walking around a cemetery in the early hours of the morning who was also polite. Maybe that why as I walked off I heard him say.
“Please respect the grave, the family memorial starts a 10 and I don’t want to have to fix anything,”
“No sir,” I said, “I wont touch anything. Thank you again.” I then waved and headed off in the direction he pointed me.
I was no more than a few steps away when I looked at my watch to see what time it was and when I saw that I had an hour and a half before the memorial service the groundskeeper had cleaned up for I decided to move a bit quicker. Something, more than likely the name the groundskeeper had mentioned, told me I did not want to be anywhere near the grave sight when the memorial started.
It only took me just over five minutes to walk the path I was directed down and the grave sight was as easy to find as the groundskeeper had indicated. But if I thought I was ready to visit the grave of my dead brother I was sadly mistaken when I stepped up beside it.