It is, from a cultural point of view, supposed to be something significant. It isn’t. Just some arbitrary point in time, well past the allotted three-score-and-ten half-way point. So why do I even bother bringing it up? Mostly as, I suppose, other things are happening around the same time. This isn’t, despite how it will come across, some pitying cry for something lost. I, as always, am just working through that which flits across my mind. If you are longtime here, reading my output since the last decade of the 20th century, you know what to get. Everyone else, please tl;dr. The mind is a terrible thing to taste.

Bedoin tribes ascending
From the egg into the flower,
Alpha information sending
State within the heaven shower
From disciples the unending
Subtleties of river power
They slip inside this house as they pass by

The age isn’t the thing, but the splintering of the family unit. My eldest leaves for university in a few months, and this, more than some point in my journey towards the grave, is hitting me more. We have been a family unit for so very long now, it ends with escaping the confines of the four walls we built around them. I did it. They will do it. Unavoidable. Inevitable.

If your limbs begin dissolving
In the water that you tread
All surroundings are evolving
In the stream that clears your head
Find yourself a caravan
Like Noah must have led
And slip inside this house as you pass by.
Slip inside this house as you pass by.

The balance will be different. The atmosphere will be changed. I suppose I should reflect on how well we did raising them, but what is the point in that? It is too late for us to change their past, or mine. We did what we could, which was never going to be good enough, or what we wanted to do. Time, money, the usual excuses. But we tried. Would I do things differently? Of course. I did them that way, and given the chance again, why not try something else?

True conception, knowing why
Brings even more than meets the eye
Slip inside this house as you pass by.

Our priorities were always the children, so it was a life lived for them, forgoing the holidays, the boozing, everything to make their life as best we could. Me, I forget, a life in service, but only I know that. Somewhere between all the theologies there is Truth. My truth, yours might, will, does, vary. And I am still, despite the years, always happy to sit somewhere and discuss this with you, gesticulate wildly, laugh, contradict myself, infuriate you but mostly just get to you realise I am right. And if you don’t realise it now, well, I have endless patience. You’ll catch up eventually.

In this dark we call creation
We can be and feel and know
From an effort, comfort station
That’s surviving on the go
There’s infinite survival in
The high baptismal glow.
Slip inside this house as you pass by.

People kept saying we should save for this, get a pension, buy this, go there. But we couldn’t. Have you ever lived whereby you have nothing left over? Where car breakdowns, house emergencies, whatnot, are dreaded as you can’t afford them to happen? Month to month? You can have your takeaways every week, we played boardgames we still had from our formative years. We traipsed through forests, fished by rivers, read together, played together, stayed together. I have been a father to my children way longer than mine was to me.

There is no season when you are grown
You are always risen from the seeds you’ve sown
There is no reason to rise alone
Other stories given have sages of their own.

Was it hard? Maybe. But fun is had in other ways, and I hope I gave my children some sense of wonder, of searching, laughing, thinking, trying. If not the finances to do other than bits and pieces. Should I have done this? Should I have done that? Irrelevant, too late now. Yes, I still hold sway over some parts of their lives, I have to, I am one of their parents, but they grow, up and hopefully not apart.

Live where your heart can be given
And your life starts to unfold
In the forms you envision
In this dream that’s ages old
On the river layer is the only sayer
You receive all you can hold
Like you’ve been told.

So this supposed waypoint in my life, where am I? Does it matter? I achieved stuff before, I’ll achieve stuff again. All stuff. Nothing to do with paid employ, either, that isn’t what I do. That is what keeps the roof over our heads, without the leeway to have gadgets and toys galore. I’ll achieve stuff that isn’t work, there are always schemes going on in my head, my shed and the world is a huge place, with plenty to explore. And learn. Got to keep learning, delving, evolving.

Every day’s another dawning
Give the morning winds a chance
Always catch your thunder yawning
Lift your mind into the dance
Sweep the shadows from your awning
Shrink the fourfold circumstance
That lies outside this house don’t pass it by.

Life is more than work, than gadgets. Reading quite a few neuroscience tomes recently (starting with the light, but ace, Lone Frank stuff, moving up to more abstract journals and some ludicrously wonderful nutjob email exchanges. I love the nutjobs, they always seem to talk to me.) It seems the world is realising what I have been saying for years. Winning the lottery (or inheriting a wad of cash) won’t make you happier. But I have been happy with my family for so very long now, the money would just give us a different comfort. But what happens when my eldest goes? I hope he thrives, is happy, but remembers. I am sure he will, I know he will. It won’t be easy, given he will not have his mother to pick up after him, but he’ll get by. I do hope he remembers.

Higher worlds that you uncover
Light the path you want to roam
You compare there and discover
You won’t need a shell of foam
Twice born gypsies care and keep
The nowhere of their former home
They slip inside this house as they pass by.
Slip inside this house as you pass by.

Remembers. I wonder what legacy I have given him, if any? Worthwhile? Pointless? Irrelevant? We don’t choose our children, they choose us. Did they make the right choice? And what when the next one leaves, then my only little girl? What is left? Well, something more than that which started it, as neither I nor Κασσάνδρα are the same people, if we ever were. If your children turn out well, you congratulate nature and nurture, if they don’t, you blame nature. You only get the one chance, I used it in my way. The way I was at the time.

You think you can’t, you wish you could
I know you can, I wish you would
Slip inside this house as you pass by

Is that more to the point? Rather than some life-beginning age, my work is done, or finishing. The only meaning of life is more life. And I fret about the legacy I have given them, if it is enough, too much, wrong-headed or any other thing. How they will think of me when they are older, how they will relate. (All this is, as ever, about me. I am not ignoring Κασσάνδρα, how could I, but this is different.) Or part of my life is done, and altering, morphing into something else. Another unknown, and what to make of it. I don’t know, as always, I’ll wing it. All teeth and charm.

Four and twenty birds of Maya
Baked into an atom you
Polarized into existence
Magnet heart from red to blue
To such extent the realm of dark
Within the picture it seems true
But slip inside this house and then decide.

I tend not to use my past for anything other than amusing anecdotes, as it has gone, and can’t be altered. Imprinting a child is different, too. I fret more over the mistakes, missed chances, direction I went with them than anything else. Not a regret, regret is pointless and wasteful, but a wistful musing on what might have/could have/should have been, given me not being me, not being broke, not being here.

All your lightning waits inside you
Travel it along your spine
Seven stars receive your visit
Seven seals remain divine
Seven churches filled with spirit,
Treasure from the angels’ mine
Slip inside this house as you pass by.
Slip inside this house as you pass by.

Though I am fiercely proud of my children, they are all fantastic. Happy (most of the time), clever (most of the time), fun, playful, engaging and balanced. I wonder what my mother made of me? When I left, when I was young, now. But what of myself? In my time on this planet, what have I done? Does it matter? Not in the slightest, my happiness is not dependent on producing some great theorem, some grand piece of literature, much as that would be great. My happiness is wrapped up with my original girl, my progeny, me. Everything else is ancillary. Everything. Sure, the ancillary stuff makes life easier, but it is still only an addition.

The space you make has your own laws
No longer human gods are cause
The center of this house will never die.

Time and life have both moved on without me, my children reach for their own lives. The world is a different place from when I started, I am not even in the same place. Proust was right, though there are other redemptive routes than his. But they converge. Crikey, this is even more obscurely rambling that I intended, the hidden meanings slightly more oblique than usual. Not that there has been a usual, my original (1999!) days of writing weblog posts at a rate have gone. Everything changes, when you think about it.

There is no season when you are grown
You are always risen from the seeds you’ve sown
There is no reason to rise alone
Other stories given have sages of their own.

So I do somewhat feel that my life is over, and something is starting again. It won’t totally start until my lil girl has left home, and then what happens? Do I need to get to know Κασσάνδρα again, in a context we left behind eighteen years ago? Then again, everyday is a new one, something else to read, to plan, to plot, the same people, new people, different conversations.

Draw from the well of unchanging
Its union nourishes on
In the right re-arranging
Till the last confusion is gone
Water-brothers trust in the ultimust
Of the always singing song they pass along.

I did, however, manage to get a black belt and run a half-marathon before I reached this age. Which other people have done earlier, and still more later. What of it? My yardsticks are different. My life meandered along, and meanders still. I can ruminate on all those things I never did, and won’t now. All the things I couldn’t do before, and can now. What happens next? Who knows, but the spiral of the past few years needs to change. Was that coincidental with my age? Doubtful, but there is a calling in the air, and sure hasn’t there always been?

One-eyed men aren’t really reigning
They just march in place until
Two-eyed men with mystery training
Finally feel the power fill
Three-eyed men are not complaining.
They can yo-yo where they will
They slip inside this house as they pass by.
Don’t pass it by.

Another year, another weblog post, same angst and spiralling way of thinking, writing, and speaking. Nothing changes but everything. Life. Don’t pass it by.

Post a comment

(If you haven't left a comment here before, you may need to be approved by the site owner before your comment will appear. Until then, it won't appear on the entry. Thanks for waiting.)

Leave the dark corners of the interweb alone. Go to the bright spots shone on by the Beautiful Ones

The BlackStar Diaspora

The wulf insists on text here...and I shall leave it at that.

People I know

I know people who didn't work at BlackStar, and they have weblogs too. These are they.

News, politics and paranoia

The State is not your friend


It is a well-known fact that the Stray Taoist (nee Toaster) isn't as internally consistent as he thinks he is. Welcome to his world.

Feeds: RSS | Atom