Monday, February 25, 2008

Bev in Heaven: A Hundred-Word Story

In memory of my late friend Beverly Burge, who died suddenly a month ago and whose shloshim (thirtieth day after burial) we observe tomorrow:

“Beverly Burge?” asked the angel. “Welcome! Right this—” Suddenly she froze. “Goodness! Duck!
Bev looked into the distance and grinned. “Cassowary,” she corrected as the cloud of feathers, fur, skin and scales hurtled closer. The angel leaped aside as a young Persian leopard sprang forward, knocking Bev to the ground.
“Roo, let me up! I’m glad to see you too, but I can’t hug you all at—”
Roo nudged her gently, his eyes twinkling.
“Oh,” Bev breathed, spreading her arms and finding that her embrace was as wide as it needed to be. “Oh. I guess I can.

Bev, who was the section head of the Quarantine Unit at the Jerusalem Biblical Zoo, hand-raised many animals including a tiger, lion, kittens, ferrets and, last of all, a Persian leopard named Roo who died suddenly last year.

Bev was also a writer, musician and friend to people all over the world. She is very much missed.

May she rest in peace.

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