January 09, 2006

BORN (AGAIN) IN THE USA

We were walking down Western for a long few blocks, and right before we passed the Saint Candle'd memorial in a box with it's color xerox RIPs and a thin plywood cross where the man was killed (where JR saw the man die) we began talking of the rebirth. Personal rebirth and of spirit renewed; of Life, but how to live it?*

About, how, when you realize that we are perpetually moving closer to death, loomed to it as much as we are life, you get free from a lot of the inbetween and unreasonable musts. JR saw a man whose corporeal and spirit had just separated, taken in an instant from of this world to out of it. He said perspective came quick, one night, maybe two. You make peace with death's swift manners and it raises you up.

I did not remember until I was home, I had had this same revelation --maybe seven years ago--on the same strip of Western. My life at the time was just smoke and ash. I was all kinds of frightened, but, by accident, had started believing in god, and started praying constantly-- for hours a day; the revelations of spirit were constant. I made peace with death just south of the Western/North intersection, because I was walking alone from the train, in the dark, and a man had been following me slowly in his car for two blocks and I tried picking apart whatever I could to be less scared. I got ok with dying in the span of of about 100 feet, in the middle of plaintive, panicky dialogue with god. Not so much a force of will as it was just a sense upon me. Respect of death's omniprescense, when it comes, you must meet it.

This weekend we went to a friend's dad's memorial service, at his father's local Lodge. After the service, the friend and I talked about peace with death and it's impact on loss -- and does it make a difference (we agreed: yes). I looked at the buttons on the friend's suit, which belonged to another dead man (his wife's grandfather) -- they were silver with a golf ball on a tee. Same kind of suit as some of his dad's lodge buddies. The old people, of course, know how to greive and what to say, how to say it, to hug and not pat the arm awkwardly, and that you bring hotdish (or any dish featuring cocktail weinies). Lots of folks make it to thirty and know mourning and funereal grace only informally; after, I watched the older folks, peanuckle partners past, widower golf buddies, old Mooses with lodge livers; there was nothing unknown in their mourning. It was sure, they knew it's form and shape. Our table of kid-friends, we were all moving like nervous atoms because of what we do not know yet.

(* Can you resist Swedish hardcore? Me neither!)

Posted by Jessica at January 9, 2006 02:54 PM | TrackBack