Monday, September 3, 2012

The Eve of Back to School

It is the last day of summer and the eve of the New Year. We will both grieve and celebrate tonight. It’s been a wonderful summer. We had great adventures traveling alone, and with friends, we saw great cities and beautiful beaches. This year it felt like we had more really great books to share than any other summer I can remember. Work has been good, and John’s health continues to improve. I feel so grateful for the goodness that surrounds us.

This night –Labor Day--always feels like New Year’s Eve to me—the influence and habit of so many years of back-to-school preparation. I bought new notebooks this week even though 90% of my work is now on the laptop. But I had to have some new school supplies.

We did three cemetery walks this weekend. The longest at Albany Rural Cemetery—that one has been part of our walking habit for many years. Over the years we’ve pieced together lots of Albany literary history via her dead, and today Prospect Hill—closer to home and smaller but a poignant mix of old and new.

Some people find graveyards morbid but I have always loved them. I grew up a few doors from one and it was our playground, camp and hangout. It was also where I went to pray—even as a kid. I find a sense of tonic in walking through a cemetery. Dead people put everything into perspective.

At Prospect Hill today we looked at a fresh grave that was just dug for a burial tomorrow morning. As we looked down into the grave John said, “Are you ready for that?” It’s quite clarifying to be able to say, “Yeah, I mostly am”.

On this night also—like on Day of the Dead—we’ll eat spicy chocolate and talk about the new season coming, we’ll attempt a schedule –harder this year with book deadlines pressing--and we’ll laugh and dance and make love. Back to school tomorrow. Life is good.

1 comment:

Fran said...

This is a gorgeous post - beautiful.

What is it about cemeteries anyway? I love them, always have. And what more than death puts everything in perspective?

But while there is dancing, and spicy chocolate, and so much more... tend to that.