Another Birthday

First day of spring,  frozen fresh water seepage drapes reeds and sand in translucent robes.
  • I have turned 71, slightly less shocking than rounding another decade last year.  In spite periodicals’ claims, sanity demands I begin to discount the future.  That means not only personal future, where a clear end is in sight, but also imagined futures of family, culture, civilization, and the universe itself.
  • That ought not be a good thing.  Faith in future anchors responsibility.  But a fact is not changed by hiding from it.

Historic cemetery remains almost timeless as Huntington begins massive building spree.
  • With luck, there will be more solid years, even as the time horizon contracts.  Each moment now barely resembles those when I was 20 or 40 or even 60.  I weary easily, aches and pains pop up unexpectedly, friends are hurting or incapacitated or dying.  My own probable future path is unfortunately clear enough.

Town workers prepare to set out channel navigation markers.
  • One surprising solution is to become as a child.  Birthdays when I was ten were wonderful events.  Presents and loved ones and a day filled with wonder and food and love.  Logic claims that was because a whole exciting lifetime lay before me.  Intuition remembers otherwise.   
  • In childhood, each day is eternity, rounded and complete.  That is the outlook to regain now.  Concentrate on each day as totality.  Leave nothing undone by bedtime.  Start each day with plans that can be accomplished in a relatively short amount of time.  Realize that schedules will be interrupted or broken.  Go with the flow, and seize every moment.


 Only crocuses I’ve seen so far are this small clump in a protected corner under bedroom window.

  • As a senior I am bloated with arcane wisdom.  I stubbornly proclaim what works and what does not work.  My long life qualifies me as an expert.  Unfortunately, in constructing my life’s narrative, I unconsciously edit heavily.  I narrow-mindedly forget that what was true once may no longer be true in a quickly rushing technological society.  I discount old confusions, magnify triumphs, trivialize tragedies. Sullen anger may linger when “those stupid young folks” ignore my advice.

Day after spring brings the beginning of a blizzard, with stinging snow, local blur, and distant whiteout

  • When I was a child, I also knew everything.  I had an absolute understanding of the whole wide world.  I accepted as dogma everything I learned in school.  Nor was I shy about informing my elders about how things actually were. Surprisingly (to me), few of them paid much attention to my proclamations, but they were usually tolerant.  Occasionally they would smile. But what I knew at that time was unimportant and irrelevant to their lives.  And so it must be now.

Morning after, and we all hope we are well done with such drama for a while.

  • It is frightening to fade into unimportance.  Surely that is something to struggle against.  Just as certainly, that is something to accept.  For my own and others’ happiness, I must speak as I wish but only desire that what I say be heard _ not necessarily acted upon.
  • Ah yes.  Another birthday, blowing in the wind.

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