I visit her grave every day. She does not have a headstone yet, her stone will be unveiled on her11)yahrzeit, the anniversary of her death. All she has is a small patch of grass and four 12)studs, marking the boundaries of her plot, a tree that in the early days provided frequent shade, lots of sunshine. Summer turned to autumn, and the leaves fell, sharing a beautiful New England 13)vista. Winter came, covering her earth in snow so deep I could not reach her burial plot, offering a sad metaphor.
The love I felt for her, the love so many people felt for her in her short life, 14)lingers on. But I am still 15)in the deepest throes of grief, an agony from which I'm not sure I'll ever completely recover. From which I am not sure I ever want to recover. I mourn her death, and I cry to have lost her in the world. I cry for myself, admittedly, selfish tears, to be without her. I cry for all of the things she'll never get to do and for the person she won't grow to become. I cry for all of the books I thought I'd read to her, and will never be able to read to her.
So when I go to the 16)cemetery, I bring her the books I might have read. And I read.
I read to her because I wanted her to love literature, and because in my life, books saved me, enabling me to cope with all of the things that I have not known how to handle. And maybe they still do. I realize, I am reading not to her, but to myself.