The day is overcast and cool. Rain threatens. We walk down Lincoln Street--Sitka, Alaska's main road. My liturgical assistant leads the procession, carrying a cross. I walk behind her wearing a cope. The hearse bearing Margaret's body follows me. Behind it walk family and friends.
I carry my walking stick, carved for me by John, Margaret's husband, a Tlingit native. I admired one of his carvings while visiting Margaret two years ago. Several weeks later they gave me this gift. Fashioned from fire-hardened Sitka spruce, the stick has a band of red and black Tlingit carvings. Beneath the carvings are two symbols made of brass brads: an orb and cross and a fish. On top perches an eagle, its wings partly unfurled.
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