Sunday, August 21, 2016


Today's date, my brother's birthday, is burned in my mind.

My brother, David Frankel, was the only male child in my father's family, the one child who could carry on the family name. He drowned in a boating accident a few months before his 19th birthday. He was a freshman at Antioch college, was just beginning to figure out what he wanted to be and do -- he never got a chance to drive the second-hand convertible he bought. I wrote about this and how his death affected me and my family in "Spiffy Cadillac Cars."

As I say his name, I think of my mother, how she loved him, celebrated him, lived through the ups and downs in her life, and helped me -- never stopped helping me and being there for me -- how she gave me her strength. I celebrate her birthday every September in "My Mom's Birthday."

Mom and David are gone, but are part of what makes my mind wander here-and-there, find significance in the many things that are changing, and write-talk about them -- about the sense that I have that the future is mile-a-minute coming in around me, and I am racing into what the earth will be like when I am gone.

David & Em
Yes, people who are gone have shaped you, and made you what you are right this minute. Celebrating them keeps them very much alive and present in your life. Celebrating them is celebrating YOU. Thanks, Mom, I celebrate David's birthday today, Mom, for us.


AI Decisions said...

If I remember right you spoke of him last year, and in so doing you help keep his memory alive, to share with those of us. That is all we have of our past, as people we know and love pass away. Hugs to you both.

Stan said...

Thanks Em for writing that. I have two brothers that have passed before me. Each taught me much about the world in which I live. Never underestimate the voices from the past. Nice article.

Carola said...

Just wonderful to see the pictures.

Unknown said...

It's so sad when someone close to you dies so very young.

Dfish_edit said...

Yes, Emily...they do shape our future. By the way, my father's name was David as well. He left us at the off 52. You have a beautiful week, Emily. You inspire others as well. 🎻