Saturday, June 28, 2008
For My Friends
Photo: Mike Cottle

"Life is all memory except for the one present moment that goes by you so quick you hardly catch it going."
-Tennessee Williams

My existential crisis continues.

I realize I have lost friends since I've moved to Michigan. My life is not long enough to keep them all. I have not continued to follow my friends' paths; I don't know what woods they find themselves in--I cannot take the same inroads to catch up. The grasses have grown up so tall and I can't whack enough weeds down, so I am going a different way.

In the quiet moments, when I am knitting to the hum of the refrigerator, I think about the few people I've known who have died. I wonder about them; do they raise a glass for me, wherever they are? Or are they now so far along their roads that they cannot look back and find me here, sitting in my living room at daybreak, catching yarn between my needles, flipping my skeins this way and that? While I wonder about them, I smile. I put that smile into my garment, and hope that my finishing techniques do them justice.

I think about my other friends often. What are they doing right now? Have I been replaced by newer, more exciting counterparts? Are my friends laughing or crying? Are they going on exotic vacations or fixing the roofs of their homes? Are they getting married? Perhaps some of them have become alcoholics. Maybe a few have broken up with longtime partners. Maybe some of them are extremely wealthy--maybe they are bankrupt. Does Maria still ride her motorcycle (ah, the long rides we would take in summer, the smell of cottonwood and baked asphalt in the Georgia heat, the shimmering skies above the hills, and the curves of Hwy. 118)?

There is only time and memory behind me, and only time in front of me. I am absent without my friends--my existence is only validated by others--the comings and goings of relationships. Otherwise, it would be only quietness. So, I am quiet for my friends, wherever they may be, wherever they may go, whatever memories they make.

I think I'll take up drop-spindling and watch roving become yarn, dropped to the floor, threading up like the Fates' linens. There, I will find myself, contemplating the simple act of time, spreading around my feet.

This next stitch, then, shall be for my friends. The one after shall be for me. The following one shall be for the world. Then I shall make a stitch in time, too.
Written by FRITZ
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Name: Fritz

Location: Detroit Rock City!
Where the weak are killed and eaten

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    What I Live By:
    We shall not cease from exploration And the end of all our exploring Will be to arrive where we started And know the place for the first time. Through the unknown, unremembered gate When the last of earth left to discover Is that which was the beginning; At the source of the longest river The voice of the hidden waterfall And the children in the apple-tree Not known, because not looked for But heard, half-heard, in the stillness Between two waves of the sea. Quick now, here, now, always— A condition of complete simplicity (Costing not less than everything) And all shall be well and All manner of thing shall be well When the tongues of flame are in-folded Into the crowned knot of fire And the fire and the rose are one. -T.S. Eliot "Little Gidding"

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