Thursday, July 26, 2018

Without or With You


Determined for your response, (yes, yours,) I persist. Are we at a disconnect? You go your way, I mine. Life goes on. Your life has details, a daily dictum. So too for me. The dictionary of life gets heavy; keep it simple.

But we may forget one another. How ‘light’ is that? How very watered down picayune memory can become; or is that: the memory of picayune matters? Still, it’s not quite like forgetting Schroedinger, let alone the name of his cat. Ask Pavlov. Names can no longer ring a bell.


Let me not remain obtuse. Of what significance is the name of another if not knowing or recalling how it makes richer your life? Yet place names are often based on people. We do not necessarily know the origins. And all places have significance to someone. Some are generic: Peter’s Drive Inn; Andy’s Gonna-Bar; Carol’s Care Centre. To whom might these, specifically, refer? Yet, how can we possibly stay aware of the myriad milestones such names have left in people’s hearts? How may they demarcate any given memory? Places or people, we know so very many in our lives. And each, in some measure, has an impact. Indeed, others have learned lessons from us (as we have, from them) in how to be, (let alone how not to be!) We each glean from life according to our own proclivities. Surely, it’s better to keep as aware as we can of our impact on this world? A single phrase can be so upsetting. A small act can appear so puerile.


Letters to friends reveal much. When we do not refer to their last intimations it as though they remain unheard. So, in losing another’s letter, or accidentally misplacing it in the waste, or in inadvertently deleting it from one’s email account, the details disappear! Memory does not necessarily serve (me). Especially if not answered almost right away. And if one has very many friends, the recall of another’s details, especially for me, can be altogether too fragmenting. I shall surely get things wrong! As for my own immediate details, reporting them can be like a child’s; they can absorb so much of the here and now, excited only by the instant: “I wore my new blazer that I got from Tailor Maids, and my shirt that you saw me in the last time we met, and we went to the new movie, Momentary Madness; it was brilliant. So, as I was coming out there was this accident on the corner of Blind Spot and Intersection, but no one was hurt too badly, thank goodness! Next week we’re flying off to Tie-land, and I shall celebrate my birthday there. A pity you can’t come!”


So it goes. Manufactured truths can extend into reality. (How to be forgiven if, hoping that my recollection is right, I hazard at calling your brother, “Roy”?) One tends predominantly to be left or right brained. Left is rational, sequential, concrete. Right is abstract, metaphorical, random.


Point is, either way, maturational insight takes time. Compassion take time. Awareness is not always immediate, and like enlightenment, it is not so much a product as a journey. And so the details (for a right brainer) evolve predominantly into feelings (“which is all,” according to the poet, e.e. cummings). Yes, sparse details can devolve into the smudge of forgetfulness that mangles our clarity with each other. We each have so very many things, so very many other friends, so very many thoughts. And as the awkward dictum goes: talking (predominantly) about things is shallow; talking (predominantly) about people is hollow; and talking (predominantly) about ideas can be pompous. Best to incorporate a little of each; better to be comprehensive, inclusive, and integrative. (N’es pas?)


With or without you, life goes on. If you’re reading this and we have not personally connected over the last long while, then believe please that should I see you (given that we both may well still be alive) .... believe that I shall feel warmth and care and interest and well-wishes for you and yours, for your endeavours, for your proverbial hopes and dreams. But of details of your past, specifically, or even mayhap the recall of your very name, I shall perhaps be found remiss, forgetful, and abstract. With or without you, or me, life goes on. But.... is that enough?



1 comment:

  1. Wise words my friend. Hope your house lot hunting is going well. Meanwhile you are seranaded nightly by the American Bullfrog Choir doing their rendition of Bartok's Night Music. Your friend and mine, Dave

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