Sunday, May 02, 2010

warm nests, dark flights...

"In life, change and forgetfulness may give the impression
that relationships are temporary and conditioned by the
events of time, but to the soul, remembrance and
eternal connectedness are more important."
-thomas moore

"The family and the family beyond family"
The family into which we were born leaves an indelible claim
upon us. The gravity of kinship carries and inevitable weight.
Asking the question, who are my brothers and sisters? opens
up the possibility of a family beyond the genealogical family.
A spiritual family, a universal family.
The mystical unity of humankind."

Those words above written by my beautiful friend
Ron Atkinson

"I never saw the morning 'til l stayed up all night
I never saw the sunshine 'til you turned out the light
I never saw my hometown until l stayed away too long
I never heard the melody, until l needed a song"
-tom waits

I remember my first friends, or rather that feeling of friendship.
That warmth and excitement of wanting to see someone.
Grade four, Port McNeil and we lived in a trailer down some
dusty logging road. They lived close by, two sisters, and l
remember them being tall, giants, they were like vikings.
We ran and played, it was like scenes from "the sound of
music", running through tall grass fields, if only we had sung.
We played games, re-enactments of "Gunsmoke" and once we
tried to smoke some hollow dried grass shoots, it didn't go so
well. I favoured one sister, the blond one, she had the longest
silkiest hair, and to me at that age, she was a goddess.

"Sing a song of sixpence, pocket full of rye
Hush-a bye my baby, no need to be crying.
You can burn the midnight oil with me as long as you will
Stare out at the moon upon the windowsill, and dream..."
-tom waits

I've spent many years talking, meeting people on the street,
but it took a long time before l learned of "the family"
on the street.

I met these three one night, down a alley, behind a building,
two men, one boy, one dog, one cat.

Luminosa Obscura, they were sitting, resting, talking,
laughing, smoking, drinking, huddled together around a
invisible fire, the dog at the hearth, the cat nestled into the
boy's tummy. It was a family, it was a sense of belonging.
I came away feeling the glow and warmth of their shared fire.

At the risk of sounding like l'm still in grade seven. Well,
Mike is my best friend. I've known him since college, over
twenty years now. Mike and l spent alot of time together over
the years. He was a year ahead of me in college, and every
friday we would go to the pub up on 16th ave in calgary, drink
beer with jimmy and some of the instructors, play pool, darts.
After college l convinced Mike to move to the island with me.
We raced to the island, him in his red rx7 and me in my yellow
Volkswagen bug. He didn't stay long that first time, but l
convinced him again years later to come back, l got him a
part time job where l worked and when l was fired, he ended
up taking my place. He was so much better at it. We did
alot of bike rides, most of vancouver island and then one
summer spent 13 days riding to calgary, well high river
actually, did you know there are four mountain ranges in
between vancouver and calgary.
The good, the bad, and the ugly, l could tell mike any of it
and he would never judge, never scorn, it was his presence,
his friendship, his love.
He was there helping my old friend mike labrie when he died,
and he sat with huey when he died.
He sat with his mom this year when she died.

I hope that when l am dieing, Mike will come and sit with me...