… died in May 1997 at eighty-three years of age.
I stared unblinking at the final words of the page. We had shared seven years of life. This man, utmost artist and craftsman of words, who painted such life into his world that it must surely live forever, had lived when I lived. Every nerve in my body trembled, sweeping in wave after wave across the shore of my being, bringing a new tide of awareness in me that will one day be remembered as my departure from who I once was.
I once lived without knowledge that this writer would recolor my vision, make my heart ache for a lifetime to which I can never belong. Yet here in the present a tendril of time has reached out to me, skimmed across my skin, and taken gentle hold to show me the path running back in time. It is a path already travelled, for every word I read was a footstep returning me toward the present.
Is it possible to adopt a fragment of another person’s spirit? My own words pave new roads through time for others. Where will I lead them?