Thursday, July 30, 2009

Marian and I were friends for about 17 years. In the last few years our communication consisted of messages on answering machines. I missed her very much then, as I do now.

At Marian's service I recognized very few people other than her immediate family. Austin was so grown up, a man, and that gave me more solace than anything. When Marian would make me dinner (almost every night) when we were neighbors on Carl Street, Austin would be right beside her making the dressing for the salad. He was only about 3 or 4, but if he wanted to cook, then that's what she would teach him. She was such a good Mommy.

Then, when he got a little older, she would fight tooth and nail to make sure he got the very best attention he could at school and at home. I loved looking at the collection of books she had for him. I would lay on her floor for hours next to the spinning bookcase - Marian and Austin's library.

If you can believe it, I knew Marian before she loved animals. I remember the first time she agreed to cat sit. Her apartment was meticulous and she spent days picking up cat hair! She was a good friend above all though, and would always allow my blue eyed dog Jack to sleep on her floor. She said it was only because he was so handsome. Always the aesthete.

I heard so many stories at the service about what Marian brought to people's lives and my story is the same. She opened my eyes to books, music, organizational skills :), treasure chests (she had so many!), fancy cosmetics, truly loving friendship, I could go on and on. I'm so lucky to have known her.

My best to Augie Dog and all her family and friends.
Much love,
Angela (Scott) Donlan

Thursday, July 23, 2009

My darling daughter Marian...

I held you in my arms when you were born, I held you in my arms as you left this world.
My arms are empty now, but my heart is very very full.
I love you forever,

Saturday, July 18, 2009

It is with deep sadness that I hear the news of Marian passing. And reading the words on the blog just shows what a wonderful human she was.

I had the greatest pleasure of working with Marian, for only a brief period, at Aeneid/Eoexchange in 1999/2000, when she was an intern completing her MLS degree. She worked one or two days a week - I think it varied and we would have lunch every week. I looked forward to our time together and she touched me in ways she'll never know. She was a great inspiration to me, a strong woman and beautiful to boot. I'm half the woman she was.

I heard about her breast cancer diagnosis in 2002 and never got a chance to see her - I had moved home to England and was back and forth to SF. We missed each other and alas lost touch, but I have never forgotten her. She was definitely an inspiration to me and I am so sad that she didn't beat the cancer. This news certainly puts things into perspective. This is a great loss of a great lady of immense human capacity and a huge heart.

My thoughts are with you and her family, please let everyone know how farspread this stunning lady has reached.

Sorry to see her go and may her memory live on. I am privileged to have had the opportunity to share her.

Best Wishes
Sarah Lebedeff

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Back at You, Kid

Marian and I became friends through a disease. Ugh, right? Except there was nothing terrible about our friendship except for its brevity: two years and a lifetime.

One gift Marian gave me was a simple card, picked up at Trader Joe's market. She may have given the card to others; in a way, I hope she did share the joy it gave me with other friends. The art (Linda Carter Holman) is of a woman in southwestern garb hugging the long stems of cut calla lilies and tulips to her chest over a quote from Wallis Simpson:
A woman's life can really be a succession of lives, each revolving around some emotionally compelling situation or challenge, and each marked off by some intense experience.

Inside, under the printed "Thinking of you with love during this challenging time" sentiment, she had written:

"Libby, Libby (Hedgie, too!),
I miss your hugs...
I miss your laugh —
I miss your tears —
I think of you everyday.
I love you so much —

Who knows what "intense experience" prompted the card from my friend. I do know that losing Marian from this physical realm saddens me and while I believe she is in a joyful place, my suffering is all about me. And so I offer her poem in my heart,

I miss your hugs...
I miss your laugh —
I miss your tears —
I think of you everyday.
I love you so much —

Fresh Berries

Marian was a wonderful woman. She was so kind to me, and I loved her from the second I saw her. She seemed so calm and peaceful when I came to visit her in early June. She insisted on fixing me a bowl of fresh berries and she fussed all over me and my brother. I wish I had met her more than that one time, though.

I'm sure we all wish that we could see her sweet face and feel her kind smile. But she died with her closest family, and she probably died with a smile.

Gracie, age 9
I am without proper words to truly express how profoundly Marian touched me. From the moment I met her I was, and will continue to be, inspired by her courage and fight to get the most out of her life and live it true to herself. Knowing Marian changed me in so many ways, from having the courage to hold my doctors accountable to finally taking Tai Chi, having my first-ever scoop of Mitchell's avocado ice cream and dress with a little more spunk. Even cancer could not touch her beauty or her spirit, and I will miss her so dearly. Dear, dear, Marian, may you float to peace on the feathers and strong wings of all our love.

Mary Love

Red Lava Cakes


To me, these pictures remind me of Red perfectly in her space - we (Red, Marilyn Lee and I) were making a batch of chocolate lava cakes (she would flush when she ate them - it may have been the most significant positive reaction to my cooking) and she let our dog Zuma lick the butter she was working with from her fingers when she thought nobody was watching...

Fortunately, my wife Dori was recording the process for posterity.

Best wishes,


Monday, July 13, 2009

Marian the Librarian

Marian, oh Marian
Was there ever a librarian?
With wit, wisdom, and such marvelous style
Who goes out in the world
Banner unfurled
Beaming love from her beautiful smile

Cathy Layton

Sunday, July 12, 2009


My cousin, Marian, you are one the most beautiful women I have ever known, both inside and out. You are truly missed. Thank you for being such a true inspiration.

Alexandre Garrett

"Who Made You the Fashion Police?"

My name is Chelsea. My mother, Lillian, was fortunate in being able to work briefly with Marian, for about a year, I believe, and in that time, I also befriended Marian.

I remember I was in junior high, and having a hard time with school and such. I hated junior high, but Marian always had words of wisdom and advice for me, to make it better, when kids were mean about anything. When it, in particular, concerned clothing, she had a saying for that: "Who made you the fashion police?" She always let me try on her clothes and shoes. In fact, I think there was one time, at one of her great parties, when I actually did like trying on her clothes and such. It was so fun to go visit her (when she lived in Dickinson, ND) and her three cats- Mac, Piglet, and I can't remember the third one's name (Wimpy, perhaps?)

My best memory of Marian is that she had this incredible fashion sense, incredible spirit, and was just an incredible person overall. She graced everyone's lives with her presence and she was, hopefully, never taken for granted. May she find peace and may the angels lead her in.

Friday, July 10, 2009

I work with Marian's father, Philly, and have come to know Wanda also. To know the type of people these two wonderful parents are is to get a glimpse of how wonderful and beautiful a daughter they rasied. I only met Marian one time, but feel as if I have known her forever through her father. I felt proud to see a woman smiling and BRIGHT through all the trials she has endured. Sleep peacefully, Marian, you deserve this rest!


Thursday, July 9, 2009

Final Hours

Your grace,
So beautiful to see,
Moving through your final hours
Preparing for what will be

Your face,
Alight with love, a glow,
Teaches us about living ~
Each day, a gift, as you well know

We won’t hold you back
But you are too lovely to leave
Before the world has had enough of you,
Leaving us behind to grieve

Letting go is hard
Although you’re ready to move on
To a better place
Where your love will shine brighter
And exist in a state of grace

Cathy Layton, cousin

With One Foot in Each World

Marian embraced the world with her arms, loved fully, lived richly till the very end. She lived life with a capital “L”, taking each step of the journey with eyes open, with curiosity, with a lion’s courage. Life for her was a spiritual journey, and she continued on this path until her final moments of life. I like to imagine her hovering between life and death in the hours before she left, with one foot in each world, still reluctant to bid her loved ones goodbye, and then at peace, moving toward death, full of the wonder and curiosity. I don’t know what lies on the other side, but I am certain that, if it is possible, Marian is there in the realm of the eternal continuing her spiritual journey, a brilliant light…

I will carry her memory with me always,

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Water Bowl Retreat 2008

My husband and I were so saddened to hear about Marian. She and I formed a very close bond during last year's Water Bowl Retreat at Vajrapani. I just adore her and am grieving her loss. We live in Huntington Beach, CA, so are unable to attend the memorial service, but our hearts are with everyone. Marian was so special to us, kind, loving, thoughtful, and incredibly giving. We had no idea how ill she was because she was always tending to others, giving back rubs and yoga stretches to ease our tired bodies. She will be greatly missed.

With much love and many prayers,
Sandi & Will Manson

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

A Most Sweet and Kind Heart

Marian was a most special friend. Though our actual time together was very brief we had an instant bond. I felt that ocean of love and kindness in her. Somehow I know that she could touch everyone in the same way. Pure nonjudgmental love. She had that and a most sweet and kind heart.

I will miss her so much, but I know that her soul never dies and she is now liberated from the limitation of the body, free to be among the great spirits that have visited and affected this world.

Much love.

Swami Murugananda
Chief Librarian
108 Yogaville Way
Buckingham, Va 23921
434 969 3121 ext 128