As the new year arrives and varying illnesses takes me, I withdraw further and further from all contact. For this I am sorry. Sorry that I might miss days and days of people's company. Of kindness and laughter. Of knocks upon the door and smiling faces.These are transactions impossible to put into any books when payments are due and accounts settled.
If I can, I will mark my days with journeys upon the roads and byways between the stones I love. The Dove stones and Lad Law. Cludders Slack and the Gorple road where the falcons fly. The valley of my faeries and gods and beloved ash trees- I had such a strange journey there in the snow at dusk.. turning to look behind me on the journey home, it seemed as though my path was lit with tiny flickering stars like fireflies. I may have cried. I think the valley likes me. Places where love found me. Where sky and stone meet. I have a mind to lie upon my round stone where I heard a song and watch the skies roil above me over Widdop reservoir like I did on Christmas morning.
I laughed with friends and relatives on New Year's Eve. Even danced a little and I don't dance in public. It felt good. But it's like this:
Beyond all this, the wish to be alone
However the sky grows dark with invitation cards
However we follow the printed directions of sex
However the family is photographed under the flagstaff
Beyond all this, the wish to be alone.
Beneath it all, desire of oblivion runs:
Despite the artful tensions of the calendar,
The life insurance, the tabled fertility rites
The costly aversion of the eyes from death---
Beneath it all, desire of oblivion runs.
If I talk to you, it means I can and want to. If I don't, it just means i'm being quiet and am in pain but still want to. I'm always in pain these days. It's uncomfortable to admit it. My back is a livid red scar that always stings. My spine is broken. Other things, too. But perhaps some things heal in time. I wish I felt close to some/any of you. It seems to be a fault in my personality. Whatever you think, if you've entered my life, I remember. I remember you all, if not your actual names. Like the beautiful young girl in the music library one April afternoon. Telling her how much I hated that bloody Dylan album, and the curiosity of the Alan Parsons Project and laughing about the person in front of us in the queue. I forget what she said, but I always remembered her smile and the way the shafts on sunlight fell on her hair and even the dust motes and the way they just hung there in the light around her. So long ago now. I had fewer scars. I bled less.
One of the best days I ever had I my life was at a bar on New Years Eve... I remember looking around at all the people I loved. Practically everyone I cared about under the roof of the Mechanics. I remember thinking it would never ever be as good as this again and in my mind I could see all the dominoes falling and the whole totality of our lives was spread about around me for a moment. The only person I couldn't see was me. But oracles never can see themselves, hah. Good night.