Learning To Love You More




Assignment #51
Describe what to do with your body when you die.

Laura Moulton
Portland, Oregon USA



I saw a TV show when I was a kid about a Native American chief who died and then was placed up on top of a sort of bed on poles, and covered with furs and then left alone. They covered his eyes with something so the birds wouldn't peck them out. I always thought this would be a nice way to be "buried", but I don't think they're doing that anymore.
Instead, I'd like to have my hair woven into a thick braid and cut off at the nape of my neck. This can be donated to a place called "Locks of Love" that makes wigs for kids who are undergoing chemo for cancer (http://www.locksoflove.org). If it's possible, I'd like a photo of the kid with my hair-wig to be sent to any friends or family who are interested, especially my mother, if she's still alive. If anyone feels moved to do so, perhaps they can begin a penpal correspondence with the kid(s).
Next I'd like my body to be burned. I'd like someone, maybe my blind friend Larry, to quote Ray Bradbury in a dramatic voice and say "IT WAS A PLEASURE TO BURN" as I'm fed into the crematorium. I'd like my ashes to be spooned into a bunch of little cardboard boxes (lined with felt) and made available for any friends or family who might like to sprinkle me somewhere. I'd especially like my immediate family to spread some of my ashes along the banks of Indian Creek, in rural Idaho where we all grew up. I'd like a box of ashes to be shipped randomly to each country I've ever traveled (especially the island Penghu, between Taiwan and China) and so a piece of me will have returned, even if it lands in the dead letter office.
It would be fun if everyone I've ever known, from my 5th-grade teacher Mrs. Dalen to my hashish-smoking Canadian ex could gather in Idaho for a giant picnic out on the grass, overlooking the creek.