The Kindest Beast

“I’m setting twenty-two tables for the funeral feast, Satan is by far the kindest beast…”  Spiritual Cramp; Christian Death

Funerals. The ritual of death we all partake in at which time we say farewell to our dearly departed loved ones. Let’s face it, they’re just depressing as hell. Even worse is when you’re not a religious person and the funeral is at a church. Also uncomfortable if you’re not of the same faith of the person who passed.

And no – it’s not about religion, but I’m pretty sure the fact that my family didn’t know when to stand or sit during grandma’s funeral gave us away as the heathens we are. The religious rituals of death are fascinating. I suppose for many they offer comfort and closure. My personal experience is that the ritual itself did nothing for me. Pretending she’s gone to some city in the sky does not comfort me and make my grandmother’s death any less painful or any less a loss. She’s gone back to all that is. Period.  Now I have, in the past, seen evidence that the consciousness of the dead live on long after the shell ceases to function. But none of it suggests to me “heaven” per se. Merely returning to the source. I have yet to really see grandma off on her journey.

I saw Joe and my aunt Karen after they passed (in dreams mind you). I’ve even seen dead pets pass over.  I have yet to see grandma pass. She was the type who would have wanted to make sure everyone was okay before she went for good. She would want to make sure her final wishes were carried out. My guess is that by this time next week I’ll have had the dream. I told her, a few weeks before she passed, that she was welcome to visit me anytime she wanted after she passed and I’d be expecting it. She kind of laughed at me. I kind of wonder just how “religious” she really was at the end. Just some private conversations we shared about life and death and the afterlife.

I regret nothing. I spent a great deal of time with my grandmother. I visited her religiously every Wednesday night (unless I was sick or the weather was horrible). And I took her to get her hair done every other Saturday (unless she was sick, I had a prior engagement, or the weather was bad).  The last thing I ever said to her was, “I love you.” So I don’t have that “Should have…” “Could have…” “Would have…” running through my mind at all. I had closure.  I’d seen her only three days before she passed and talked to her the afternoon before she passed and she was in a lot of pain. I remember both times praying to Eury to take her soon so she wouldn’t be in pain anymore. It was an answered prayer.

We still have to go to the cremation/burial later next week (long story).  So R.I.P. Grandma and I suppose I’ll talk to you one last time before you go.

About Steph

Steph is an award winning and bestselling author of thrilling steamy and paranormal romances, dark urban fantasy, occult horror-thrillers, cozy mysteries, contemporary romance, sword and sorcery fantasy, and books about the esoteric and Daemonolatry. A Daemonolatress and forever a resident of Smelt Isle, she is happily married and cat-mom to three pampered house cats. Her muse is a demanding sadistic Dom who often keeps her up into the wee hours of the morning. You can contact her at

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