It is spring and the garden wakes up from its winter nap. Buds appear on trees and shoots push through the earth, reaching for the sun as it travels across the sky. I too follow the sun’s journey. I watch it rise in the morning, I eat my lunch when it is at its highest and my dinner when it sets. I watch it turn the sky aflame when it dips behind the mountain and I see its reflection on the moon before I fall asleep. The day is gone.
I am reminded of a passage from Fahrenheit 451, Ray Bradbury…
“He saw the moon low in the sky – the light of the moon was cause by what? By the sun of course. What lights the sun? Its own fire. The sun goes on day after day burning and burning. The sun and time – the sun and time and burning – burning…. The sun and every clock on the earth – it all came together and became a single thought in his mind. After along time of running on the land and a short time of floating in the river, he knew why he must never burn (books, houses etc..) in his life. The sun burned everyday – it burn time. The world rushed in circle and turned on its axis and time was busy burning the years and the people without any help from him. If he burned things and the sun burned time then everything burned. One had to stop – the sun wouldn’t… Someone had to do the saving… in books, memories. Safe from the matches of men.”
Burning time. I do not follow the sun, I run from it – trying to squeeze as much as I can before the day burns away. What will withstand the assault of the sun? A story or a lesson to be told over generations? A piece of me that will live on when the sun burns my last day? A paragraph that would speak to someone years later – and inspire someone to pen his own words? Yes, I should preserve my story before time runs out – because it will run out, everything eventually dies. The only thing that can live is the memory – and that too may die if I do not record it.
I have memories of my son who passed in 2009. I can close my eyes and see his face, his smile, and his blue eyes. I have this ache in my heart and I have a million tears that I will shed for the rest of my days… and I also have a treasure, his poem. When I read it, I can imagine him writing it, sitting with computer in his lap, fingers gliding over the keyboard as the words make their way from his imagination to his fingertips. I can see him looking up and gazing out the window waiting for inspiration. It is as if he is speaking to me the words I need to hear now – words of comfort. The sun cannot burn this – it is a time in his life captured for as long as I need it. This is why I write and this is why you should write – to capture a piece of time – to expose a piece of yourself to the future world – for the ones that will miss you when you are gone and for the ones who will wish they could have known you. Hurry, for the sun will be up soon and speeding across the sky – burning time.
My son’s poem
Watching myself through his eye. Waving goodbye Foreseeing but still repeating
Watching myself through his eye. To high to realize
Ever-seeing but still repeating
Watching myself through their eyes. Two sides trying to compromise
Foreseeing but still repeating
Watching under a different light. Am I still alive?
Foreseeing something changing
Watching my life
Ascending towards the sky
Looking straight into his eye
How did I die?
Up here you forget how to cry. Knowing this place wasn’t a lie
Being watched by his eye. Still learning how to fly
Seeing someone changing.