The gravel crackled under the tires of Kathleen’s car as she drove into Sedona Memorial Cemetery.
Kathleen looked around her. God, this is barren, she thought.
She remembered the large cemeteries in her home state of California, with their massive beds of roses and statues of Jesus Christ, His arms open as if gathering in His flock. Even though Kathleen felt the religious aspect was a bit contrived, the graveyards there somehow gave a sense of comfort to the living.
But this cemetery was different. Here, the wind howled through the juniper trees, and the sound echoed back from the high red rock cliffs at the edge of the graveyard. There was no comfort here, only the raw elements of nature.
As she drove slowly through the cemetery, she noticed grave sites encased in short brick or red rock stone walls, showing off faded silk flowers stuck in the red dusty earth to commemorate those who lay beneath. Other grave sites looked well-kept with decorative rock placed inside the walls, holding down the red dust. Junipers dotted the area, adding the only green to mute the stark rust-colored ground.
Kathleen drove to the end of the road to the Buckley grave site. She parked in front of the well-built red rock wall imbedded with a bronze plaque. The name Buckley stood out in capital letters.
She sat for a moment staring at the name so revered in Sedona. It was June, two months since Scott’s funeral and this was her first visit to his grave. She wanted to come sooner but was afraid to face his death and all that it meant to her life.
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