Ruby Red was born out of grief. She’s nine. She’s spunky. She wears her heart on her sleeve. She appeared out of the blue and stole the first line of my next novel. She took off running and I’ve been tagging along ever since.

It’s difficult to make sense of life after both your sister and brother die within a few months of each other like Ruby’s did. Her whole world turned upside down so Ruby turned to blogging to try and put things “right” again.

Monday, March 17, 2014

Ruby, Kerrington, & Jessie Mobley visit Ty’s grave

When I woked up this mornin’ it was kinda dreary but some a the trees outside was covered in pink flowers. Mama says spring is comin’ ‘n soon the redbuds ‘n dogwoods ‘n the wisteria will paint the world in pastels. She said she’s tired a the dreary wintertime ‘n can’t wait for spring.
After breakfast Kerrington ‘n me rode our bikes over to Jesse Mobley’s house ‘n she walked with us down to a park with trails ‘n a fort ‘n a zip line that we played on all mornin’. Her little black dog, Pepper, went with us ‘n we took turns throwin’ a stick to her ‘n she never got tired a bringin’ it back. After lunch we went explorin’ ‘n Jessie Mobley showed us where her brother Ty is buried. It’s a spooky old graveyard with lots a statues a angels ‘n cherubs. Some a them people done been buried there for more’n two hundred years. There was a whole lots a dead Mobleys there with one big angel watchin’ over ‘em all. That angel was so sad-like it made me wanna cry. Then we found Ty’s grave. It was just a flat stone with his name on it ‘n it said, “Tyler Matthew Mobley, Asleep with Jesus.” When I read that I wanted to run away from that place. Dead people ain’t sleepin’. They’s doin’ ghost work or angel work ‘pendin on how they lived here. I done seen Loraine ‘n Rubin after they died ‘n they wadn’t sleepin’. They was alive! Not alive like me but alive like the angels ‘n they wadn’t cryin’! Loraine was doin’ what she couldn’t do here—playin’ basketball ‘n smilin’ real big ‘n Rubin done planted a whole yard full a daffodils so I wouldn’t be ascaerd a that haunted house!

There was some other angels in that graveyard—one was leanin’ over the gravestone sobbin’ up a storm ‘n another one holdin’ a little baby that died on the same day it was born. I didn’t like it there ‘n I was glad Mama ‘n Daddy got Loraine ‘n Rubin’s earth bodies turned to ashes. We’re gonna take ‘em to the beach on Easter ‘n sprinkle ‘em over the ocean down at Wilmington. I like to think a them floatin’ on a ocean wave ‘n not bein’ eaten up by worms in a creepy graveyard.

Jessie Mobley told Ty that she was doin’ alright ‘n she wished he’d come to visit her like Loraine ‘n Rubin done did to me. “Maybe he did come,” I said. “Maybe you just didn’t notice.” Well, Jessie Mobley got mad at me for sayin’ that ‘n I was glad Kerrington was there to say somethin’ ‘cause I couldn’t think a nothin’ to say. “I knowed a lady once,” she said, “whose baby boy died ‘n ever since then a blue butterfly been landin’ on her arm. She said that was her baby comin’ back to earth to tell her he was still alive.” Well, Jessie Mobley just looked at Kerrington like she didn’t get it or maybe didn’t believe it. So Kerrington tried again. “Ty was different than Loraine ‘n Rubin ‘n that baby. So maybe he’s sayin’ somethin’ in a different kinda way. Maybe you should listen ‘n watch a little bit harder.” When Jessie Mobley heard that she just knitted up her eyebrows. Then she turned to look at Ty’s grave again. When she turned back round she was wipin’ a tear from her eye. “What if Ty don’t have nothin’ to say?”

Kerrington ‘n me just looked at each other ‘n didn’t say nothin’ for a bit. But Pepper started just a barkin’ ‘n then she stood up on her back legs ‘n let out little whiney sounds. “I think she sees Ty,” Jessie Mobley said. “She always done that when Ty came home from the hospital.” Kerrington stood there watchin’ that dog with her mouth open ‘n Jessie Mobley called, “Pepper! Come here, girl. "Is it Ty? Do you see him? Do you?” Pepper came to Jessie Mobley then whinin’ like a little baby. Jessie Mobley knelt to pet Pepper. “You saw Ty. Didn’t you girl?” She hugged that dog’s neck ‘n Pepper plastered her face with drooly licks. When Jessie Mobley stood up again she was smilin’. She spread her arms out ‘n looked to the sky then back to us. 

“That was Ty…my brother.” She put her hands to her chest. “I can feel him,” she said with joy tears floodin’ her face. “It was Ty...I can feel him in my heart.”

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