December 31, 2005

A Cup of Kindness

It's the last afternoon of a year I'm not exactly sorry to see the end of. But I'm looking forward with high hopes to the next one.

Yesterday was a year since PaPa died, something which has certainly cast a long shadow over my life ever since. I probably miss him every day, a little bit; not who he was at the end of his life, but who he was as I remember him. I don't wish he'd kept on continuing, as tired and broken as he was, but I often wish that what he used to be was still here. Which I suppose it sort of is, because that's what remains of him more than anything else in art and memory. If there is something that endures the body - and I don't think I can quite bring myself to believe there isn't, somehow - I hope it's the best of what we are, those things we remember with most fondness. That's what I miss about him, and the only wish I'd make is that he hadn't released all that into the Mystery so long ago. I wish he'd been happier, at the end.

Likewise, this year, as hard as it's been, is one I want to remember not for its hardships but for the fruit it bore, which wound up being bountiful in many ways. And when I look back on it, there are a lot of very bright lights in the shadows of 2005, for which I have to thank the love and good company of my friends and family. You were there for me when I needed you; I hope I can do the same in turn. And I hope for happiness for myself as well, as a gift to me and to the people who love me. I intend to choose it as much as I can, come what may. If I have anything like a resolution for the New Year, that would be it.

And the best of this past year has given me a lot to be happy about; I have a novel well in the works (which I encourage you all to continue hounding me to finish), with further projects waiting in the wings; a growing body of work with OVO, the creation of which continues to be a source of wonder and joy; and not least of all, friendships that have only gotten better and closer, which is always preferable to the alternative. (Not to mention there are now some lights at the end of the tunnel concerning finances and all that vulgar stuff.)

So Happy New Year, everyone; I trust that it will be, for all of us. Take care of each other, both here at the end and in the new beginning. And I'll see you all in January.

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