Dear Death This work is considered exceptional by our editorial staff.

August 11, 2010
Dear Death,

Can you understand love? I seriously doubt that you can; because, if you could, you would have looked into my mother’s eyes when she had turned around to smile at me in the car that day. You would have seen what I had seen: the affection glowing in her hazel gaze and the joy that flitted across her lips. That blissful moment before terror.

You witnessed that love shining like a headlight in our midst, yet still you made our car swerve off the road. And you wrenched my mom and dad from life’s embrace. My embrace, even though I thought I was holding on tightly enough. Why did you take them cruelly in your arms, and stalk past my brother and I? We were in the car too! I’d rather be walking hand in hand with them (wherever you took them after that day) than be left in the dust of life.

When I woke up in the hospital the next obscure morning, white-coated figures told me that they were gone. Through my tears, I made a solemn vow. It was a vow to hate you for the rest of my life. Mom and Dad, gone? You don’t understand love.

Your newest enemy,

Dear Death,

It’s been a year since I last wrote you, and I have already broken my vow. You took Grandpa yesterday, but he was different. I loved Grandpa in a way that would bring tears to anybody’s eyes. He used to tell me fantasy stories, swearing that they were real. I’d say, “you’re crazy, Grandpa!” He would look really serious and say, “What? You think I’m crazy?” then smile and wink: “maybe a little bit.” He warmed my heart so much.

Cancer, supposedly, was the murderer. But I recognized your aura in the hospital when he called me in to talk. He told me that everything was okay, giving me a smile that I had come to know as my friend. He told me that everything was all right, that there was nothing to fear from you, that he was just moving on, that I would see him in time. His words consoled me, but I cried as he gave my hand a little squeeze. Then I saw his spirit floating like a veil out of the room. I could have sworn that it winked at me.

I broke my vow, because I forgive you.

With love,

Dear Death,

It has been four years since Grandpa died. My brother has had a really hard life (as have I, for that matter). I had often seen him in his room praying, with tears in his eyes, before he left home to get a job. I guess no one answered his prayers, because I was told this morning that he was found dead after having jumped from his apartment building. This time, I shed no tears. I am beyond that now, even though my big brother is gone.

Before Grandpa called me to his sickbed, I heard him saying to my brother with a smile “teach Rose all that you know after I’m gone.” He has done so, because I’m looking at the noose that I have tied for myself, a foot in front of me. I’m almost ready to walk into your arms, just like my family. Now I have just stepped up onto the chair…

I don’t know how these letters will reach you, but I hope they do.

I want you to see what you have done.

See you soon,

Dear Rose,

I want you to know that I have read and reread your letters; they were very beautiful. Silver tears line my worn face as I watch you swing slowly like a pendulum from the rope. I also want you to know this: I’m so sorry. But your brother, he had jumped; somebody had to catch him. But I know you loved him. Your grandpa, he shook my hand as I helped him from his deathbed; he knew that it was all okay. And I know that you loved him. As for your parents, I did see that look in your mother’s eyes; and I’m so sorry that she and your father had to leave with me. I know that you loved them. But I am the deliverer; some people must be left behind as I take the others with me.

I remember your first words to me. To answer, I do understand love. I have seen so much, how could I not? But I’m glad you wrote to me and that you will be joining the ones that you care about. I look into your tranquil face and think: this is not the end, Rose.

Your friend,

Join the Discussion

This article has 232 comments. Post your own now!

Cwatsonbtvs said...
Sept. 25, 2012 at 1:04 pm
<3 it !!!  
marzapan said...
Sept. 24, 2012 at 1:18 pm
this was amazing, i loved it.
taylor_baby07 said...
Sept. 21, 2012 at 10:43 pm
just amazing i loved it!!!
SmokyRose said...
Sept. 21, 2012 at 9:45 pm
I can't imagine what your inspiration was or just how you came about to write something so incredibly intricate and in depth with the meaning you've instilled into this piece. Chilled to the bone in its beauty.
Emily_Greene said...
Sept. 21, 2012 at 9:17 pm
Sad, moving, and creative. You made it sad but it wasn't in the cheesy way it's usually delivered with other writers. I ended up crying.
Trees said...
Sept. 21, 2012 at 7:14 pm
This was just beautiful!! Great job!! 
Ninz59 said...
Sept. 21, 2012 at 1:37 am
gave me the chills. Loved it. You have talent. 
foreverHope said...
Sept. 18, 2012 at 7:51 am
so deep! its an absolutely fantastic story. Its sad but thats what makes it great! comment on my stuff sometime. thanks!
Amoney said...
Sept. 11, 2012 at 8:35 am
This is a really good story, sad but amazing.
TickTockBANG said...
Aug. 30, 2012 at 5:31 pm
Just... AH. AAAAH. This is amazing and has that sort of beautiful sadness.
RaisaMiri said...
Aug. 30, 2012 at 11:02 am
Nothing can compare to the beauty of this story <3 that was phenominal <3
MarieAntoinette2012 said...
Aug. 30, 2012 at 10:09 am
That was amazing. That was so beautiful, and I love that Death gets to say his piece. That was phenomenal.
leaves This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Aug. 30, 2012 at 10:07 am
I cried soooo much reading this. It is beautifully written and I felt so much emotion in every sentence.
keepsmiling24 said...
Jul. 17, 2012 at 9:12 am
That. was. so. amazing. So. very. amazing. :) 
Kestrel This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Jul. 5, 2012 at 10:47 am
80 wow. this is incredibly well done. i loved it. It really makes me think. i always will think of suicide as a very selfish thing, but it's nice to think that there is somebody there to catch us, even if it is the somebody we fear most.
Pea6898 said...
Jul. 3, 2012 at 5:15 pm
This is a great story it brought tears to my eyes
SethPThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. said...
Jun. 25, 2012 at 1:59 pm
Even though death is a very emotional topic, it is often difficult to convey the strong emotions married to the passing away of family or friends. But, let me tell you, you captured this emotion better than any piece I have seen on this website. This is an incredibly powerful, poignant piece. Hopefully this was also therapeutic for you to write if it has any personal basis. Keep writing!
Cinna_the_Poet This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Jun. 25, 2012 at 12:57 pm
Have you read The Book Theif by Markus Zusak? I think you would really enjoy it. Great job!
StillYoung said...
Jun. 3, 2012 at 11:28 am
I know everyone says this, but I geniunely cried. Magnificent. Just.. I can't even describe it.
fidgetyfrog said...
Jun. 3, 2012 at 6:27 am

how. did. you. do. that.


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