I lost a dear friend recently. A star the sky took back too soon. I still can’t believe it, and I won’t for a long time because it shouldn’t have happened. Her father read the poem below at her service, and she chose the Sufjan Stevens song that follows to open the gathering. Both pieces touched me before, and now with the additional personal context I find them even more resonant.
Out of the night that covers me,
Black as the pit from pole to pole,
I thank whatever gods may be
For my unconquerable soul.
In the fell clutch of circumstance
I have not winced nor cried aloud.
Under the bludgeonings of chance
My head is bloody, but unbowed.
–by William Ernest Henley
Life is beautiful and fun, thrilling and poignant, explosive and thoughtful. But it can also be frustrating, confusing and angering. There’s a lot I don’t understand, especially right now, but what I do know is that I’ve leaned on certain people quite a bit of late and the love I’ve put out has been returned exponentially. I actually think I can feel it in my heart (I am sure someone out there wants to tell me this isn’t medically possible; go take a long walk off a short bridge, as Megan McCulloch Weiss would say).
It’s a wonderful feeling to know that the people I call friends are as quality as they come, so to see those people exceed the already high expectations I didn’t even know I had is truly a wonder. I thought I understood the bounds of compassion, love and support — and with one sonic boom, that barrier was recently broken. If my heart could burst, it would.
I have no time to ride the bullshit bus, and neither should you. It can be long, to be sure, but it moves quickly so make sure you’re spending it with the right people. And as I’ve posted before, a dash of ‘carpe that fucking diem’ spirit never hurts.
Thanks to Allison Zeilinger for the song: