Denied a Proper Burial

The deceased preta kept wandering as he was a disturbed ghost who could not find rest, his spirit was destined to roam on dark and stormy nights, because others thought he was not fit to be buried.  The soul of this dead being shows gratitude to the person who as an act of charity, arranged for the burial of his dishonored corpse.  His soul could now return to the creator, and he would no longer have to stand on the edge of eternal darkness.  His grateful chant would fill the void in order that others may know that in the land of the night, the ship of the sun is drawn by the grateful dead.

The ancient Greek Cynic philosopher Diogenes of Sinope an Ionian colony on the Black Sea was extreme in a lot of ways, as he lived a very poor and ascetic life, and his residence consisted of a tub and his only possession was a wooden bowl that he used to drink water from.  He felt that people should not be embarrassed to do private things in public, and he was often seen defecating and masturbating in the open where others could watch.  Diogenes told his friends that when he died, he didn’t want to be buried.  He wanted his body thrown over the city wall, where it could be devoured by animals.  My grandmother has similar feelings about funerals and burials, as she thought they were too expensive and she always said that when she died, that all she wanted was for her body to be wrapped up in a burlap bag and then kicked down the sewer.

A dead body is nothing more than an empty container, it doesn’t need to be embalmed, or dressed up in fancy clothes, or be put on some mournful display, or have its remnants placed in an urn up on the mantle.  Caring for the dead is part of being human, as we learned that rotting bodies have a bad odor when they are decomposing thus making them unsanitary, so we put them underground.  Humans have decided that lives matter, and they should be remembered and holding a funeral is a way to help a dead person to pass into the next world.  The deceased are buried out of a need to keep them protected from any interference of scavengers or animals who might desire to eat our loved ones.  An old custom involved placing pennies of the eyes of a dead person to be used as the payment to Charon, the ferryman of the underworld, to ferry the deceased across the River Styx, to their destination in the underworld.

History is full of riches-to-rags stories about fallen stars and tragic historical figures who died dead broke or very close to it. Boxer Joe Louis made a staggering amount of money during his reign as one of the country’s top pugilists in the ‘30s and ‘40s, but money always passed through his fingers too quickly.  His third wife, Martha, was left broke when Joe died, she could no longer walk, and she couldn’t afford a wheelchair of her own.  She needed false teeth and new glasses, but there was no money for any of those things.  Joe Lewis was known for saying, “Everybody wants to go to Heaven, but nobody wants to die”, and he also said, “I don’t like money actually, but it quiets my nerves.”

Life is full of ups and downs and everything doesn’t always go according to plan, as you might soar above others and think that you are sitting on top of the world up in an ivy tower and then the next minute you are completely impoverished lacking any resource or the means of subsistence, which is what happened to a man named Dicrotendipes Thanatogratus. He was a noticeably friendly guy who owned the Drunken Whale Tavern.  It was located in a meadow near the woods on the spot where a tidal wave washed up a shark.  A marsh was created from this tidal wave that swept over the shore and Dicrotendipes used this place behind his tavern to dump all of his garbage.

Suddenly everything started going wrong in his life, his wife got sick and the town sawbones was not able to heal her, so she died.  He had to sell his business so he could be around to raise his children.  He felt like he had lost his place in society, as all of his former friends had deserted him.  He became the caterpillar who envied the bird, because it was able to fly away, where he was destined to spend the rest of his life in the cellar and wither away.  He started to borrow money from anyone who would loan it to him even though he knew that he had no way of paying them back.  When his debts came due, he acted forgetful, it was like he had a convenient memory that allowed him to overlook any obligation to pay his creditors back.  Things even got worse because of the antics of an arsonist and his house was burned down. He began to cry when his children were taken away from him to pay off some of his debt.  Dicrotendipes died and the whole town refused to bury him because of his debts so his body was left in a pile of horse dung.

Destiny Lands walked into town with his horse Charmer beside him and he decided to amble over to the stable so the blacksmith could have a look at his horse and this is when he discovered Dicrotendipes corpse rotting awayDestiny inquired why the man was not given a proper burial and he was told that when he met his demise, that he owed half the people in town money and that his body lay unburied as a lesson to all swindlers that being a deadbeat in this town would not be tolerated.  Destiny started pondering the situation and he made a moral decision that the transformative effect on fate of this man after his death was cruel and that he was now a lost soul who would never be shown the way to heaven. Destiny was moved by this sad story and he made his mark paying off all of this man’s debt by giving up his last penny, so he was able to ransom the corpse and give it suitable burial.  The restless soul was removed from the pile of horse dung and laid to rest and then Destiny continued on his way.

As Destiny was leaving town, he found himself in peril when motor crumbled off this wall next to the marsh and injured his horse.  He dismounted his horse and started to crouch down to get a better look at how bad Charmer was injured, and he saw blood gushing from Charmer’s leg.  There he meets a strange man wearing latex gloves who is able to cauterize the wound and heal his horse.  Destiny felt so grateful that this stranger helped his horse and he was glad that it was not any worse, as he knew that fractures in a horse can be devastating, especially since their legs are so breakable.  The strange man welcomed Destiny with open arms and then disclosed that he is the ghost of the man whose corpse Destiny had befriended and he said that he was the one who was in debt for being allowed to get a proper burial.  He told Destiny about a story that he heard when he owned the tavern.  This man who he took as a drunk told him that money was buried in the land where the marsh was created from the tidal wave.  Now that Dicrotendipes was dead, he was able to see exactly where this money was buried, so he told Destiny the location of where he should dig and he said that there was probably enough money for him to buy a castle.

Written for Daily Addictions prompt – Convenient, for FOWC with Fandango – Memory, for July Writing Prompts – Antics of an arsonist, for Laura M. Bailey All The Shoes I Wear Manic Mondays 3 Way Prompt – Castle, for Sheryl’s A New Daily Post Word Prompt – Noticeably, for Ragtag Community – Open, for RayNotBradbury Cool Writing Prompt – Famous couples from the past challenge, for Scotts Daily Prompt – Friendly, for the secret keeper Weekly Writing Prompt #150 (5) word prompt – Ghost Mark Woods Soar Meadow, for Teresa’s Haunted Wordsmith Three Things Challenge prompt – tower tidal wave shark, for Word of the Day Challenge Prompt – Amble and for Mindlovemisery’s Menagerie Wordle 204 – Breakable Sawbones Marsh Cry Wither Mortar Crouch Latex Gloves Preta Cellar Mournful Cauterize.

13 thoughts on “Denied a Proper Burial

  1. Sit up guys! Boy do I have a treat for you!
    Concerning this entry in Manic Mondays 3 Way Prompt Challenge by Jim Adams, I have words….lots and lots of words but specifically…BRILLIANT! feast on this post, visit his Blog and follow. You’ll be glad you did!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Reblogged this on All The Shoes I Wear and commented:
    Laura M Bailey

    JULY 16, 2018 AT 8:49 PM

    Your comment is awaiting moderation.

    Sit up guys! Boy do I have a treat for you!
    Concerning this entry in Manic Mondays 3 Way Prompt Challenge by Jim Adams, I have words….lots and lots of words but specifically…BRILLIANT! feast on this post, visit his Blog and follow. You’ll be glad you did!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Sight and I needed the Joe Lewis story in there to meet Ray’s challenge and it may have seemed a bit out of place, but all things considered, it actually did blend in with the rest of my story.

      Liked by 1 person

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