(Beware this post, it rambles…and that’s the way it is sometimes if you want to process out-loud.)
This poem came up from this day last year. I was doing daily grief-writing then. I miss that in some ways, but I can’t imagine keeping that up every day over a year. I’m grateful for that season, however.
When the memories come,
I stop what I’m doing
squinting my mind to see them clearly
But even now, they are brief,
waning like a once full moon,
white against a pale morning sky.
What I have loved I cannot hold.
Like the tail of a waking dream,
I grasp at the fading details
lest I doubt whether I dreamed at all.
I was getting ready for my pilgrimage to England, a place I always miss in the autumn. I tend to miss what it stood for once, though it does no longer. A place we were together, where even if the future seemed daunting, we would confront it side by side. If one was down, the other would pull him up. And then, when the cycle changed, the other would pull her up. When I think of life in America since then, I don’t think of Vernon and me side by side. I think of doing it alone. And when I think to the future, that is what is most daunting, but what I’ve come to accept: I’ll be doing it alone. It’s ok, I’ve accepted that, and hopefully I will be getting even better with time.
Rather than chapters of my life as some people look at the seasons of their past, I think of them as novellas, each a separate volume, complete in itself. So rather than the story of my life, I guess its more of a library. And I expect this season is just another story, perhaps a sequel to the last one. When I think that way, I can relax, grab a cup of tea, sit in a great easy chair in the company of these volumes of memories, knowing there are shelves upon shelves yet to fill up.
Notice Vernon’s amatic font on the pillow? Apparently he still refuses to be relegated to the shelf,.
“For last year’s words belong to last year’s language
And next year’s words await another voice.
And to make an end is to make a beginning.”
― T.S. Eliot