Jan. 7th, 2017

smokingboot: (thoughts)
Right now it is impossible now for me to avoid considerations of death. There has been so much of it around! And yes,for sure the iconic stuff is just that - people who made us smile, who symbolised or summed up some part of our experience or hope, who brought us music and stories - but this happens all the time, painful though it is. Perhaps our responses to these things are intensified by what seems to be an increasingly ugly and fearful global situation. Maybe we are mourning the loss of our dreams on many different levels.

My thoughts now move towards personal associations. I should not have been surprised at my father's death, given his very long term nicotine addiction, but then again, he lasted longer than Mark, and both had their threescore years and ten. Many of my friends were late 50s/early 60s born, and had great times with drugs and alcohol. A couple of junkies, plenty of smokers, a few alcoholics, many who are none of these things, all in all an abundance of brilliant folk I am lucky to have known. It's been awesome. But I wish everyone would stop sodding off.

And of course, there have been people like Henry, who did nothing to encourage the reaper in any way, and died aged 44.

I suddenly have a vision of myself as some old owl in a tree, hooting as everyone gets cut down around me, then blinking like a ninny as the scythe heads my way. But look, don't just let me lie in some hospital bed, morphined up to the nines to stay alive but barely conscious while some cancer or god-knows-what chews away unstoppably at me. If it's a done deal, just get me to somewhere that's still beautiful and full of animal life, let me watch the sunset and the moonrise over Moremi or Savuti, Chobe,or Yosemite, or the Ocean, just somewhere beautiful and not yet dead or just a market place. Let me see the stars and the trees before I go.
If I am dying, really dying, honour me by not pretending otherwise, help me get enough painkillers in my body to stay lucid and travel to where I want to say goodbye. And if I haven't got Mark's stuff finished and published by then, please grab the memory sticks and find someone to finish his work.

Meanwhile, let's live.

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