Stories are important. We are the stories we tell about ourselves. This is why I’m teaching a writing workshop at Hubbard Hall this summer. The class has been chosen, and they are a great group of very diverse writers. First session is June 14. I am eager to meet them. Tomorrow, Memorial Day, will be quiet. I’m going with Maria to see the Cambridge, N.Y. Memorial Day Parade and we’ll watch it with George Forss outside of his gallery. Then we’ll have a peaceful day at the farm, reading and talking to one another and visiting our animals.
I was thinking about this sad and mournful holiday and hoping to capture it in a photograph, but there is perhaps nothing new for me to say or take a picture of. We’ll see. In our holidays we honor wars and the people who fought them and leaders lost or slain. The two holidays we celebrate that are about uplifting ideas – Christmas and Thanksgiving – have been absorbed into the corporate maw and are mostly about sales statistics and online shopping trends. I asked a neighbor’s kid last year what Christmas meant and he said it meant a new Nintendo every single year. I know what these holidays are supposed to mean, but not what they really mean.
I want to think of the millions of people who have given their lives in wars, for sure, and I hope to live long enough to see a holiday celebrating the end of wars – peace and community. Tomorrow afternoon, some volunteers hope to finish up the exterior repair work on the Bedlam Corners General Store, and that is surely something for me to celebrate. I will also remember my family, and especially my parents. I wish their lives could have been happier, but all I can do about that is to live a happier life myself, and I am working on it. I remember loneliness and fear, and resolve to look forward and continue to work towards a simple, creative and peaceful life. We all the stories of our lives. Mine is, in so many ways, yet to be written. I am sorry for all of those people who lives were cut short.
I fear looking backwards, and I dread nostalgia. My life begins every single morning, and each day, I seek to renew my promise to live it fully and well.