Forward (to Mom)

I’ve “stolen” the above from John T. Edge. Stealing is one of my best, most creative attributes. John T. Edge is an educator, a learner, a lifelong seeker of meaning. I was introduced to him watching his wonderful show – True South. He is the personality of the show. The host. The narrator. The guide. The storyteller. The revealer of meaning. A model for everything I strive to be. And, I get the sense he struggles as much as me. Or I could just be imagining.

My wife Joyce bought me a book on one of her many adventures out while we were living in New Orleans, LA. Living isn’t really the right word. Neither is residing. The former is too committal to what we were doing. The latter is too antiseptic. More on this to come in the book that follows. The book Joyce gave me is The Potlikker Papers by John T. Edge. He tells the “story” of the recent (past 60 or so years) past of The South. While I use punctuation and capitalization loosely, the capital T and capital S are intentional here to express a sentiment. I absolutely love the way True South and The Potlikker Papers are structured. It wonderfully supports his essence as a story teller. And using my brilliance as a thief, I have stolen its essence and made it mine. John T. – sorry and thank You!

Forwards to books are interestingly positioned in the structure of a book. Our western culture teaches us to go front to back and left to right and top to bottom. Forwards are almost always written by “another” that usually has some sort of insight into the author and the content of the book to follow. For reasons you would discover reading the book John T. departs this convention. I again steal. And frankly do it as I lack such a person. I also sense that forwards, while located toward the very beginning of books, usually are written with a book mostly, if not entirely, completed. I am who I am, so I am writing this at the other end of the book process. I am writing this without a single word of the book written. I have but a concept. My aim? To tell my story. I feel compelled to share as fully as my impervious (in the worst of ways) soul will allow.

I am writing the “forward” over several sessions. It is truly a look “forward” as I stated above: it is my first writing. It has been a few days since the last session. And my Mom passed during that time. As I work my way through the waves of sadness, I feel compelled to come back here. To write. To emote. To connect to those best inner parts of me. AND that is the intersection of my Mom and this writing. Mom nourished every ounce of what is good in me when others condemned. She prodded me when I needed a swift kick in the ass. Mom sought my council when I, myself, felt so unworthy of providing. AND she was the most selfless person I have ever been close. I stand on Mom’s incredibly broad shoulders of her 5’3″ 105 lb. body.

My simple promise – do every thing in my soul to make Mom proud. And as Yoda said, and I paraphrase, “There is no try, there is only do or do not!”

Published by gat2jdt2

60 something retirees (or semi-retirees) learning to live differently

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