Volcano Village Hawaii!
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The Life and Work of Artist
Lilian Delgado
Available here in both hardback and digital editions!

Hardback, Lilian Delgado: order here!

Digital edition, Lilian Delgado: order here!
The ocean of existence is a vast, vast sea­—there is never an end of it.  
When you leave this life, all you take with it is your heart.  If you so lived
your life that you filled your heart with hatred, greed, meanness and lies,
that is what you begin with in the next.
Looking at the truth and taking responsibility is scary and takes courage,
but...it’s a whole lot easier in the light of day, than waiting until it comes up
in your consciousness when you find yourself in the suffering of illness,
dying, or perhaps, simply in the middle of the night, when you can’t hide
from yourself.
Are the phantoms of our past harmless?  Do their wounds heal at death,
or dry up, or disappear?  Or are those traumatic wounds bleeding...for all
time?

Chapter 1

“The wound is the place
where the Light enters you.”
(Rumi)


*

""What will happen to my babies? What will happen to my babies?” the woman
sobbed, as they carried the two little girls, one still in a nappy, wide-eyed and
with that baffled look that children have when they don’t understand something,
dressed alike in yellow flannel onesies printed with a menagerie of pink
barnyard animals, out of the room, and out of her sight for the last time, out of
her sight forever.  She tried to lift her head for one last glimpse, but she no
longer had the strength; she was dying fast.  The tears rolled down her
increasingly mottled, darkening face, gathering in bluish-gray creases around
her mouth.  Her breath came in short, soft and shallow gasps; sometimes she
didn’t breathe at all for almost a whole minute.  The scourge of cancer had
reduced her to a mere skeleton; her rising and falling ribs, when she did
breathe, were outlined in the thin white sheet that covered her; her chest
moved up and down slowly, when it moved at all, like a too-heavy boat in
stormy waves.   She was dying, and the end was very near, and she was very
restless in her mind.

Tears pooled in her eyes as she stared with helpless anguish at the ceiling,
where a huge, sickly-brown cockroach, emboldened by the distraction of the
people below him, looked down upon her, his antennae twitching, back and
forth, back and forth.

Her family was gathered around her bed.  Her mother lovingly caressed her
forehead, which was unnaturally cool to the touch.  One of her sisters held her
hand and cried softly; another was bent over her cold feet, weeping
uncontrollably.  Her brother, always feeble, had propped himself standing
against the wall, too numb to move.  She was dimly aware of who was there,
and she was even more dimly aware of who was not there.  Of all the people
who had been important to her in her life, only her husband was not there.  But
she had not expected him to be there.  Unlike in times previous, when his
absence or indifference or infidelities had stuck like a dagger in her heart,  it no
longer mattered.  In fact, she could no longer remember the man’s name, or
what he looked like, though somewhere deep in her bones, she did remember
that he had betrayed her.  And all for money.

It was her children, her two little girls, mere babies, that caused the
unspeakable grief in her anguished heart.  Who would love them, nurture them,
protect them?  Who would ever love them as much as she loved them?
“My babies, my babies, my babies,” she cried, and she held her free hand to
her inconsolable heart in a tightly clenched fist, “what will become of them?”  
Maybe in that deep recess of our souls, where we know all the future and all
the past, she knew and grieved the fate of her children, especially the baby,
who would be sold and carried away to a distant land—away from her loving,
protective arms.

“It’s alright, they will be cared for, we will love them,” her mother cooed.  “They
will be loved just as we love you.  I promise.   It is all right to go.”
Her mother herself was on the verge of collapse, but willing herself with all her
might, she focused on her dying daughter, instead of her own grief.
For a moment, the woman in the bed stopped breathing.  She tried to believe
that it would be so, that her babies would be safe, she tried to believe in
promises again, but in her bones she knew that no one loved her two little girls
as much as she loved them.  A deep shudder racked her whole body with that
truth, and with it went a great exhalation.  She lay absolutely still.
Her eyes were wide open, their enlarged black pupils gazing fixedly at the
ceiling.  Her jaw relaxed, so that her mouth was slightly open.  A drop of saliva
glistened on her lip like a diamond.  Her chest had sunk inward, and no longer
moved.

The utter quietness of quietness engulfed the room, like the moment
immediately after a bad accident, before reality starts moving again.   Or like
the vast quietness of one of those nights out under the stars in the desert,
when one gazes up at the Absolute, and realizes one’s mortality.  Every
molecule in the air was saturated with the truth of finality.  No one moved.  No
one said a word.  Utter grief hung in the air like an infinite void, a great black pit
in which they all had fallen.  A faint, unwelcome, flowery smell, like sickly
orange blossoms and jasmine, began to permeate the room.

Suddenly the woman in the bed inhaled deeply and then screamed. The sister
holding her hand gasped, the sister holding her feet jumped, the brother
leaning against the wall lurched forward, and her mother flinched.  
Her mother, who, like everyone else, had believed she had breathed her last,
gathered herself quickly and bent toward her and said, “What is it my love?  Are
you in pain?”

The woman in the bed inhaled deeply again, and a crackling wet sound rattled
in her throat, as if she were drowning.  Her sunken chest fluttered as if a little
broken bird were struggling under the sheet. With a supreme effort, she tried to
point to the ceiling with the index finger of the hand she held tightly to her heart,
but she could not uncurl it.

Her mother looked up, where the cockroach was waving his antennae, back
and forth, back and forth.
“I see Jesus!  I see Jesus!” the woman in the bed cried loudly.
And then her open eyes, still gazing above at the ceiling, in astonishment,  
glazed over."
A compelling story of
greed, jealousy and
shame, a
powerful tale of

ancestral karma and
the hereditary patterns
and emotional burdens
that stretch back

beyond birth and
imprison us.

“They stood around
him, my dying father,
famished vampires of
death…”
The Life and Work of Lilian Delgado
is also available at most online bookstores
and many fine brick and mortar bookstores!