I love and hate this scene from The Book Thief.
I don’t like being Hans Hubermann.
I really don’t.
But I keep getting cast in the role.
I only hope I play the part as well as Zusak paints the portrait.
I know I don’t always.
We must sit with grief. We must let its screams fill the street, and then escort it with painstaking care back through the front gate. Not just for a day or two, or even a month or two. It’s a lifelong journey. While most of us are ready to step out into sunny streets, for the one suffering it’s still snowing in the kitchen. It’s always snowing in the kitchen.
Which means, perhaps the greatest gift a Hubermann can give, is helping to haul that snow down into grief’s basement.
And building a snowman.