Nothing is so fatiguing as the eternal hanging on of an uncompleted task. ~William James

Friday, August 27, 2010

The gods envy us. They envy us because we're mortal, because any moment might be our last. Everything is more beautiful because we're doomed. You will never be lovelier than you are now. We will never be here again.
~ Achilles

Today, I am thinking about mortality.  The organization I belong to, and work for, conducts prayer vigils at the sites of homicides in our city.  I attended two this morning.  In all, four people's passings were recognized.   Their stories were all sad, as such stories are.
Returning from this somber work to the blogosphere, I struggle with the feeling that my writing is small in the face of life's big and terrible events.  And with the thought that my existence itself is infinitesimal in the context of the cosmos and its universe of fragile souls.  But I come back to the belief that my life is large and significant to me because it is mine.  And that it is as big as I make it.  
Which, again, is not to say that I need to be great and important, or to do earth-shattering things.  (And why would I want to shatter the earth, anyway?) 
Rather, it seems to me, my moments and days, however many there will be, will matter if I am present for them.  While it is regrettable that I will probably not discover a cure for cancer--especially because I am not working on that project, and have no skills or training to bring to it anyway--I can give my full attention and best effort to what I am doing.  Some of that attention and effort will be spent doing my small part to make change (not at a cash register, but in my community); some will go toward listening to birds, marking the blush of a sunset sky, finding ease in my body and warmth in my relationships.  And, for the time being, a regular portion will be directed to the communication that is this blog.
So even though I am "doomed" to the same end as those mourned in our prayer vigils this morning--and, really, because I am doomed--it is important to be here for my life.   Which isn't over until it's over. 

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