I have begun on an entirely new project. My water heater threatened to damage all of my old writing: poetry, plays, and short stories from the last two and a half decades nearly destroyed! So I began the epic task of digitalis ingredients it all. This is available and open at Writingthentonow
Like the classic riddles:
The beginning of eternity;
The end of time and space;
The start of every end;
The end of every place.
I am the beginning of sorrow, and the end of sickness. You cannot express happiness without me, yet I am in the midst of crosses. I am always in risk, yet never in danger. You may find me in the sun, but I am never out of darkness.
I realized how much a single letter changes everything. Words matter. Words are made up of letters. Without an n, this cold and tired window becomes a widow. Letters, so small, so easily escaping attention, matter.
For me, last night, it was the following three:
The difference of a letter may be correct and may be profound. The beauty in the simplicity of conveying the world through nothing more than a letter change is sublimely satisfying.
Each of the three statements are unconditional, independent and yet still have interdependent aspects. Loss does not alter the first two, it simply changes some inherent assumptions about how the day to day proceeds. Living may cause loss, but it also may inspire love. And love… without that, what else do we have? Even if love is the reason for loss.
Veni, vidi, vici — eat your heart out. Just like that single minor little change may matter; the way every person you interact with matters; so a simple letter matters to the meaning.
All the little things I miss about you. It isn’t the large or overwhelming, though they still creep up to surprise me in their absence like a childish game to see how high you can make me jump in the startling — no, it is the little things I miss. The day to day joys and yes, even frustrations, that you were so skilled at causing were so much more beloved than I ever let on. We only know what is truly best once it is gone.
I miss your logical testing and playful silliness. I am bereft of the clever quips and the terrible fake Scottish accent or descent into archaic speech – this day greco-roman conventions, then High Elizabethan on the next. There is nobody to make jokes of absolute absurdity that still contain an element of background education and delight in mythology, theatrics, and inventive philosophy. I miss your aid and your talk of beards and your love of food. Your laugh, your smile, your raised eyebrows or nonsense declarations, such small parts to the great you.
It isn’t the important, the life-altering, or even the romance. It is the little things that define a person. Every little thing helps to compound that vast aggregate grief, the loss and the anguish, but in every day, what I miss are just those many, ever present, little things.