Tuesday, February 01, 2005

A Day in Quintology - Baby Seth Goes To Heaven

Saturday was a day of plenty, but what capped it off was an experience that had been branded with scorching pokers into the inner recesses of my psyche. That penultimate destination of all living, breathing creatures on this planet, defeating their foolish dreams of immortality. That last step before the two boons of fate: eternal salvation or perdurable damnation.


"Please...please come." his voice came in as a desolate wave of sadness. Coming out with pure elation after the concert, that feeling came crashing down at the sound of this call for help. I rushed as soon as I can.

The de Guzman clan had been gathered at the wake. I felt like a fish out of water, however I saw their eyes bade me welcome into their enclave. Up front, lay a casket no longer than 3 feet in lenght.

It was the first day of Seth DeGuzman's wake, Wonderwall's favorite nephew.

"He'd be turning 4 next month." came the cracking voice of the boy's mother. I can't help but reach out and hold her hand. I didn't realize I was staring at the casket far too long when she came up to me.

A little boy. Not even out of his infantile tethers. He looked like a cherubim encased in glass.

His liver wasnt able to support his fragile body, this I gathered from W's older brother as his wife went to the backroom to prepare food for me. He said this child was a fighter. Seth did not complain of the overbearing pain each time his affliction sent waves upon waves through his little shell. He mentioned of how they were having a fund raising at their alma mater to ask for everyones help to send Seth to the States, because we don't have the facilities in this country to perform such a delicate surgery. Ateneans were generous enough, and they were about to send him in a few weeks time, but then the episodes occured.

"Where's your friend?" our conversation was broken off by W's mom. "He might get frostbite outside." she tried a shot at injecting humor. She was trying to keep the spirit of the occassion as light as possible. Yet you could see that there had been traces of tears welling up in her eyes. I respected her decision.

"Oh, Toshi? He told me that in thier country, its a custom that its bad luck to look at a dead person without proper rituals. (I whispered) Actually he's just a sissy." At least I was able to form a smile on her lips, even if its effervescent. And at least I was able to find a way not to mention the fact that Toshi and W had been on each other's throats for quiet some time now.

I stayed there for an hour. Before we left, I was caught up in near trance-like state. The picture on top of the casket held my attention because of the subtle details. Seth was on a hospital bed, you could see that everyone was around him, there were gifts all around. However, looking at Seth's eyes, you could see the glimpse of despair. He wanted everyone to not worry about him, but it seems that he already knew. He knew that his time is up.

A boy. A fragile little angel who hasn't even reached a quarter of my age. The universe may work in infernal ways, yet why Seth?

Eternal rest, may you grant unto him, Oh Lord.
Taken away at the doorstep of a life that could have been extraordinary.
Times like this become a lucid mirror
Facing me with my own mortality.
Take me not from my threshold of realizations.
And let perpetual light shine upon Seth.


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