Listener Essay - My Rock

Jun 21, 2016

  Jackie Mercurio lives with her husband, five children, and black Lab in New York. She is a freelance writer and editor, who teaches at Concordia College and the Sarah Lawrence College Writing Institute.

My Rock

When I plant flowers near my grandfather's grave, my trowel strikes rock, and I think of the many years I have planted flowers right here in this very spot and have never encountered it. I dig around the stone. I scoop it from the earth. I roll it onto my hand. The rock is smooth and round, slightly smaller than my open palm, and with my index finger I brush away dirt, wondering if it's been buried here all along, the same three decades as my grandfather.

Even in death, in is possible to reduce your carbon footprint. Most Holy Redeemer Cemetery in Niskayuna, operated by Albany Diocesan Cemeteries, has set aside 20,000 square feet of undeveloped space for 260 natural graves, becoming the first Catholic cemetery in New York State to offer "green" burial space.