Wednesday, June 29, 2016

The Full Measure of My Devotion

Little sweetheart, one of the things I very much hope to do in the next few months is to mount a performance/installation of the live Of Love and Loss adaptation. I wrote a new draft of it for performance with the band and a female spoken word narrator and I've shared it with a few people, as we look for an opportunity to do just that. This morning, a dear friend of many many years who is a writer herself and whose theatre company in LA, you may remember, did a workshop of a couple of my plays that year that you and I first met, emailed me this morning. Her reply brought me to tears because it is so very much what I hope in my best moments that I am managing to do - to honor you. Here's a little of what she said:

"Hi Michael,

I've read Of Love and Loss.
It is a deeply heartfelt homage to her. You are a beautiful writer and your grief expresses itself poetically, your choice of images, the conversations with the other side that you choose to share, your longing, your guilt, your admiration for her and what she meant to you, all vivid, resonant and poetic. Your writing is dripping with your pain. 

It is sometimes hard for me to see you so subsumed, but it is where you are.  You are doing what you set out to do, which is devote the rest of your life to her. Vocally, loudly, publicly..."

Little sweetheart, that is exactly what I hope I can somehow succeed in doing - to devote the rest of my life to you. Please be with and guide me with your beautiful spirit, won't you? And take me to you the moment God will allow, as soon as He says, "okay". With all my love forever... 

Saturday, June 25, 2016

Something remembered

I wrote something, little sweetheart, a while back and I'm not sure if I posted it here but it came to my attention and memory again today and I thought I'd share it. Love you forever.

I understand so many things now that I never could've pre-ruin. I know why people are compelled to visit their lover's graves and to linger there for hours. I know how grief sits at the very top of ones heart, perched there always and ready to come forward at any time, even if you accidentally breathe just a little too hard. And I understand that odd phenomenon where people cover their mouth with their hand when something extraordinary or terrible happens because that's what I did for hours in those first hours after your accident, little sweetheart. That's exactly what I did when I was still so much in shock that the tears, that have never ceased to this day, had not yet fallen. All I could do was involuntarily clasp my useless hand over my mouth, trying, I think, to keep my soul from flying away, fleeing my body and spiriting itself into the undiscoverable place mortals may not yet know. I cupped my hand over my mouth in those hours, my love, I only now understand, as a kind of animal instinct to keep my soul within my being. But even so, I think a not insignificant part of me did indeed leave my shell and it, along with a large and jagged piece of my life, my youth, the man I was, fell and was broken to bits, left there on the cold tile hallways outside the ICU of that hospital, never to be recovered. Never, ever to recover in this life. Only the next. In the next, my little sweetheart. In that place, my darling, come for me and carefully peel my trembling hands from my mouth to let my spirit soar, untethered and unafraid to you.

Friday, June 24, 2016

A Prayer

May I with every day left to me wake with the thought of how best to honor you, my little sweetheart. May I with every day left to me, at day's end, think of all I did to honor you and, if yet another day is to come, how I may better honor you. May this be my way, until that day, my little sweetheart, that I may ascend and join you forever in The Forever. May it be so. With all my love, all my heart and soul. May I honor you.

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

A Meditation and Sonic Prayer

Little sweetheart, today is the day we release the new album. It's called Electric Hymnal. You're on it, of course, both singing and in spoken word and we've been describing it as "a meditation and sonic prayer" for you. Which it most definitely is. Love you forever.

Sunday, June 19, 2016

On Fathers Day

It's Fathers Day, little sweetheart, and I'm thinking of my own late father, who passed away young and has been gone now longer than he was present in my life. I'm thinking of my grandfather who I know would (and probably does) adore you. I imagine the two of you kindred spirits being fast friends there in the Forever. I'm thinking of your own father, who I sent a gift and cake and your mom is going to surprise him with later today. And I'm thinking of you, because I know you wanted to raise a child with me, making me a daddy myself. I went to that little church I told you about this morning, little sweetheart, and there was a baptism. Two little baby girls, one who reminded me of you so very much with her fair skin and light hair and angelic features and her beautiful spirit. The tears streamed down my face as I watched. Later, after the service, her family were taking pictures and she got loose and scampered speed-crawling up an aisle. As her mom retrieved her, I told her how beautiful she was, this little bundle. And, just like I said, what a beautiful spirit she had. The mom said she's always like that. She wakes up that way. And as she said it, the babe in arms was looking at me smiling and started puckering at me. "Do you want to give him a kiss?", the mom said. And I leaned over, my cheek tilted toward her sweet little mouth and she kissed me. And I thanked her. And I felt you were, as I often do, with me. Its Fathers Day, little sweetheart and that's what I'm thinking just now. Love you forever.

Saturday, June 18, 2016

My Shining, Guiding Star

Little sweetheart, I have the beautiful parchment announcing the star named for you. I also have its coordinates. It's this:

Summer Serafin
Ursa Major
RA 9hr 33m 1.68s
D 53' 59' 11.48

It's almost like a celestial postal address, isn't it, my little sweetheart? Love you forever.

Tuesday, June 7, 2016

Be True

I was having a bad day, little sweetheart. I made myself go for a walk all the way up the Met but I couldn't even enjoy it. I barely experienced it. It just made me feel even worse and more lonely. And I was almost back home, thinking how I just don't know what to do, when I saw two women with carry-on luggage, the kind with rollers, talking to two girls on the sidewalk on 10th Avenue. Like behind Lincoln Center. Not anywhere you'd be with luggage. They looked lost. So, I asked if I could help. They wanted to be at Columbus Circle they said. So, I told them they needed to go south and east. Then they showed me a crumpled piece of paper that had their hotel reservation on it. They needed to be on W63rd st. No wonder they were lost - there is no W63rd Street once you get that far west because Lincoln Center takes up about four of those blocks. I told them all that and that they just needed to go up two more blocks to W65th, make a right and then another right on Broadway to find W63th Street. I also told them once they did get checked-in, that Lincoln Center was a great place to go. I was kind of pointing through all this, giving them directions, and the other two girls, who had on some kind of name tags like they worked for a ministry or something noticed the tattoo on my arm, little sweetheart, and they asked me what it said. And I told them about you, and about the dream and everything. They got very quiet and kind. I didn't mean to make them sad. Indeed, I was glad they asked. I love talking about you. I brightened and then I said “God bless you. All of you.” And I told them to have fun in New York. Just moments earlier I was thinking that there is nothing left of my life that I want. Nothing to do, nowhere to go. That when I even try, it just makes me so sad I want to die. And I do, I do just want to pass from this life and fly to be with you wherever you are. But in these moments, when I help someone, when someone asks me something that leads me to tell them of you, I feel better. And I know that what’s left to do is just to be true, be true to you. Carry on the work. Say quiet prayers. Try to help people when I can. Be true. That phrase just seems so resonant, so important. I wrote it down last night and it’s sitting here on my desk as I write this. Life can never be what it was. How could it? It’s a smaller thing now. I need to respect that. Need to quiet myself. And be true. 

Sunday, June 5, 2016

I Hear You...

Just back from a run. It's grey and a bit wet here today but far more fair than the forecast, which was quite dire, threatening heavy rain, thunderstorms and high winds. It didn't look all that bad from my window, so after coffee, I suited up and headed out. I'm not crazy about running on the weekends because everyone and their dog (literally) is usually out too but the grey skies and aforementioned promise of a tempest found the river path fairly unpopulated. It started to clear as I neared the end, coming back through the park toward the Boat Basin and you could see more folks had ventured out. As I came to a stairway leading back toward the pier, a woman with two small children was in front of me, holding the girl's hand, with her little boy dawdling a bit behind. They were taking up the entire width, so I backed off just as the little guy tumbled. The mom was scolding him lightly, as his bottle of blue Gatorade rolled further down the steps. "That wouldn't have happened," she said "if you'd listened to me. I told you to stop pouting." I stepped around them and retrieved the little guy's Gatorade, handing it back to him, his eyes wide and still teary, as the mom thanked me. "Here ya go, champ", I said. "Hang in there. It only hurts a little while". I have no idea where that came from. Ever hopeful, eh? On second thought, I know exactly where it came from. Thank you, little sweetheart.