Thursday, November 19, 2015

With Love and Fresh Resolve...

I'm flying out of JFK in a few hours, my little sweetheart, to be in NorCal this weekend for your Dad's birthday. He will be 70 on Sunday, my love, and your mom is throwing him a surprise party. After arriving late tonight, I'm going to pick up a rental car and drive down to "hide out" at the house in Davis until the day. As ever, you are so very much on my mind, my darling. I'm looking at my new tattoo - the words you sent to me in a dream from The Forever, where you are, to comfort me and give me faith. It's healing nicely and is beautiful in your own handwriting. It's there always now to remind me how lucky I am to have been found and loved by you. It's there to remind me to be a good boy, to try harder, to do what's right, to be vigilant and mindful. Your writing, your beautiful ethereally-sent message is finally made manifest upon my flesh. I had vowed that it would be and now, finally, it is. That is such a very very good thing, my love. And it also reminds me of the work I have yet to carry out, the other vows and promises I have breathlessly made both to you, my darling, and to myself - to us both.

My dearest Summer. Little sweetheart, I have been meaning and trying and wanting and thinking about writing down everything I can think of about you and about you and I, about our time together and all the things you make me feel, all the things we did and even about now, how I long for you and pray to be with you again and forever. How I strive to understand and have simple, steadfast faith that that day will come, that that will come pass and that I will join you. That anything as extraordinary as you, as your beautiful, vibrant spirit, so central to my very existence, cannot simply vanish. That somehow, all unseen to me now, at some slight remove, you remain in the invisible middle distance I cannot yet perceive with my conscious mortal mind. I’ve wanted to write this and everything and in a way that would honor and, to be perfectly honest, that would conjure you. I’ve kept this blog for a little while that’s an inkling, a notion of this endeavor. A scattershot bit of semi-regular posts every few days, as a beginning, as a way in, as a source, as a starting place to gather thoughts and memories before launching in earnest. But it is that very real, concentrated, earnest effort to tell your story, our story, what I feel I need and must and want to, what I’ve described to others occasionally, for want of a better word, as a memoir - that has not yet commenced. Not really. But I want it to and that’s why I’m writing today, my love. I think, my little sweetheart, that somehow I have been terribly afraid. Afraid that I won’t do it right. That it won’t be enough. Won’t be as good as it should be. Won’t do you the justice that I so wish it will. Afraid it won’t be complete enough. And also, not insignificantly, my little sweetheart, I think I’m simply afraid it will hurt too much. That it will somehow make your absence even more keen, seem so very final, simply break me.

So, my bright angel, my true love, my little gingersnap, will you please help me? May I just try to write to you like this? As if we were emailing or sending each other long letters while apart on some job or commitment that took us away from each other for a period of time? Imagining us just at some remove from each other where we can’t see or Skype or talk on the phone exactly, so we just write and text and tell each other things. Tell each other as much as we can until we get tired or have to go and then pick up again the next day and tell each other more. Would that be okay, my little sweetheart? If I just talk to you like this? Like in a long letter and then another one and then another one and put out of my mind the idea that I have to get everything down all at once or it will be a failure, that I will have failed you, failed us? Is it okay, my sweetheart if we just try it like this? Where I’ll just tell you everything I can think of until I have to stop and then just start again and not worry about it being such an impossible task that I cripple myself before I have even really begun? Can I just talk to you a bit, my darling? Will that be okay? Will you please help me, Summer? May I tell you some things? May I start here?

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Our Oneness Can Never Be Erased

Little sweetheart, some time ago I had a dream - I was with you, we were together and happy and fine and hand in hand and I had a tattoo that said "our oneness can never be erased." I'm not so good at remembering my dreams but this one was still with me when I woke. A few hours later, all suited up and about to go for a run, it suddenly hit me again. "The dream!", I exclaimed to myself. I grabbed a pen and the closest piece of paper I could find (I still have it, it's tacked up over my desk) and wrote down those words, those ethereal, not at all ordinary or conversational words. It felt so much like a direct message from you from The Forever. And I've been writing those words on the inside of my left forearm with a Sharpie every day since then.

Well, today, my little sweetheart, I had them tattooed in your own handwriting on my arm. The nice girl, Michelle, who was my tattoo artist, traced some of your writing from the beautiful Christmas card you gave me our first year together and today she did the work. When she finished it was beautiful and she said so. She said that very thing and "now, it's forever".

Indeed. You are forever, my little sweetheart. And I want so to join you there. Until that day! Today, tho', I have your writing - the message that you sent to comfort and give me faith - etched into my flesh to keep you with me.

And as I headed out back into the bright, cold day this afternoon, I listened to some of our music, just as you told me to. I haven't been able to before, it's just hurt too much. But today I listened to DCFC's "Transatlanticism", with its repeated, insistence chorus - I need you so much closer and I cried and cried but knew you were near. Nearer than I can imagine.

And right now I'm listening to your beloved Goldfrapp from the CDR of "Felt Mountain" you made for and gave me when we were in Boston exactly this time just after your birthday in 2008. It's just the kind of CDR that you would make - the tracks in the order you best like them, not necessarily in the album's original sequence and on this one the title track appears three different times over the course of it and it ends with four songs from another Goldfrapp album, most notable for "Black Cherry", which just about breaks me in two, it is so very much the personification of you, my little sweetheart.

I love you, Summer. And I feel so grateful and close to you tonight....

Friday, November 13, 2015

Remember November, November 13th...

It’s November 13th, little sweetheart. Today is your 36th birthday. Your mom told me that when you were a little girl you had trouble remembering when exactly your birthday was. Didn’t you often tell me that you were no good “with numbers”? If I was looking at a calendar and trying to plan something with you, wouldn’t you tell me that you couldn’t be quite sure about such and such a date because “that’s a number, you know”. Your mom and I were talking about that, we were outside, she was on one of those little lounge chairs with a cup of coffee and the puppy in her lap, a routine of fairly recent vintage and largely carried out for the cocker spaniel - little Gidget -’s enthusiastic benefit. Your mom told me that the way she helped you commit the date to memory was by composing a little rhyme for you: “Remember November. November 13th.” It’s one of the treasures of my life to have spent each of your birthdays, in the time we knew each other, together. And it came as something of a shock at first and then made absolutely sense that the very first time I actually saw your name was in the body of an email on the November 13th less than a month before we first met. I was working in London and I got a missive from our friend Chris Smith at The Magic in San Francisco confirming the initial read-through of Tir na nOg - the play we would do together there - for just after Thanksgiving. The entire cast and company was cc’d and it was there that I first saw your name. In an email dated November 13th, 2007.

Three weeks later, Chris and a couple of folks from the theatre would pick me up at SFO to take me on to rehearsal and all anyone in the car could talk about was you - this brilliant, little red-headed tornado they’d cast in the leading role. When I finally laid eyes on you from across the room, from across the production table, I didn’t quite know what to make of you - you looked to be about 16. And a Goth. Remember, I told you this? And you couldn’t think, nor could I, what made me think that. You weren’t dressed up in black leather or anything. We guessed that you maybe had make up on. I still don’t know what that was about. Later, during the break between acts, we found ourselves together, alone, at the little refreshment table. There must’ve been 30 people at that read-through - designers and staff as well as the cast - and in this moment, somehow, it was just you and I for the very first time. You were making yourself a little plate and saving half for later - a practice I would come to know and love. I can’t remember exactly what we said to each other, can you, my love? I think you must’ve asked me if I was from New York and I think at some point during the exchange I came to understand that you weren’t in high school, that you lived in the city, that you’d returned after college, after getting your Master’s Degree, that you’d been born here. After the break when we resumed reading the second act you stopped abruptly just a few lines in and said you’d lost the (Irish) accent. “Lucky Charms. Lucky Charms…” you intoned, making everyone laugh before starting again from the top.

These are my very first memories of you, Summer. My very first, my little sweetheart. My heart is so full today. So full of you. So full of love and remembrance and longing. It is both gorgeous and absolutely devastating. I can almost touch our life just out of reach and weep with wanting to do so. I ache for you. And I’m also overwhelmed with gratitude for the light and love you brought with such grace and selflessness into my broken, hurting life. How you held me in your arms and wrapped your little feet around my ankles and stroked the well of my chest and called me your treasure. How you made all things right. How I miss you! How I love you!

It’s your birthday, today, my little sweetheart. And I remember…

Happy Birthday, my angel...

It's your 36th birthday, my little sweetheart. My thoughts are filled with you and my soul longs to fly to your side. I've so much to say and tell you but just now... Happy Birthday, my beautiful angel. Thank you for finding and saving me and bringing such love and light into my life. My every prayer is for you and that I may join you soon in The Forever. With all my love...

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Downtown Train

Remember, little sweetheart, how a few years ago our friend John asked me to play guitar at his wedding? Remember I told you all about it? That he wanted me to sing Tom Waits's "Downtown Train", so I worked up an arrangement of it, rather moody, in the style of the band? And it went pretty well. Well, Jason & I tracked it a couple weeks ago. Then I did a few more overdubs and added spoken word by you and mixed it beginning of the week. I sent it up to Scott at Old Colony in Boston for mastering and we're going to put it out as the new Bipolar Explorer digital-single. I wish we could get it out in time for your birthday on Friday but it will be close it, at least. You'll be on the cover. We're using that picture I took of you in London waiting for The Northern Line at the Kentish Town Tube Station. I had Eva fly in titles over the existing signage. It should be out on iTunes later this month. All for you, my little sweetheart. Just like everything. It's all for you, my love.

Saturday, November 7, 2015

Picture This...

Little sweetheart, remember I told you about the project we're working on with the art photographer, Jacs Fishburne? She came for a visit in August and took some photos in our studio. They're double-exposures that layer text and photos of you from all around the studio over some shots of me near the front windows. I'm composing music to go with them. And the first preview - a screenshot - of them came through yesterday. It's here below. I think it very well illustrates how you fill my very being - my mind and body and soul - with your everlasting presence.

Friday, November 6, 2015

My Miracle Girl

My sweetheart, I was longing so for you today and in a quiet moment waiting for the play to begin, I found myself alone. The other actors had gone downstairs and were at their places call. I had another five minutes or so and was sitting in an arm chair in the green room. The door to the girl's dressing room was open, no one was in there. They'd left a few minutes before. From where I sat, I could see their make up table and the mirror over it and in the reflection, the garment rack where all their costumes hung. I sat there in the chair feeling very lonely for you, my love. And I began, as I often do, to talk quietly to you, my heart so full and longing to be near you. I asked aloud for you to please "always be with me". And as I sat there getting rather teary, I saw one of the dresses on the garment rack slowly begin to sway. And then another. And then a third item, a blouse. No one was in the room. No one had been in the room for several minutes. But those three pieces of wardrobe had slowly begun to sway out of time, independent of each other, at opposing ends of the rack. I spoke aloud to you, lonely and longing, and it very much seemed that you answered me, my little sweetheart. You answered me just as you did by coming into my life seven years ago and filling my heart and soul and very existence with light and grace and love. My Miracle Girl, I used to call you, remember? How, even when you were only slightly shifting your weight as we lay entwined on my sofa or tangled up limb around limb in our bed, I would say "don't go too far away". You let me know again today that you are with me, my little sweetheart. You let me know I just need to have faith and act in love and trust in you. Yes, my sweetheart. Yes, my dear dear Summer. Yes, baby. Always. Yes.

Monday, November 2, 2015

Prayers, as ever

Today is All Souls Day, my little sweetheart and I am sending prayers on this day, and every day, to and for you. May you be safe and under the care of Love in The Beautiful New Place. And may I join you in the Forever, very very soon. With all my love...