Thursday, August 05, 2004

Reflections VI:

Over the past year, I have read a number of Xangas that have announced birthdays, anniversaries, weddings and other milestones in our lives. Certainly, I must count my own among these. One milestone that few mention is death. It is sad, and it may seem inauspicious. But if this Xanga is a journal of my life, if the O-man's site is an attempt to log one man's journey through this world, then I must write those things that represent all sides of me, both good and bad, happy and sad. Some of you may have wondered why I have been talking about my father so much lately. Some of you may have figured it out. Last week, at age 92 he passed on to a better, freer place, where he can write his senryu poetry all day, everyday.

Eulogy in mind,
memories flow unhindered
over the keyboard

It is fitting for me that he should pass in the summer, the season in which exist my fondest most vivid memories of him: family outings, vacations, painting the house. As the eldest son, the eulogy has fallen to me, and as I thought about what I should talk about, a number of memories flooded my mind--good, bad, indifferent. The vividness of the moments, mixed with the sudden surge of creative juices, compelled me to set these memories down in text form. Yes, I must admit that the memories are subjective, that they are true in spirit if not in exact detail. But they are mine, and mine to remember. There may be those who find a subjective recounting disagreeable, particularly when they concern one who cannot rebut. But these memories are not only mine to remember, but mine to share. I suppose I am still the selfish, self-centered brat that I am writing about in these posts, but I do find that expressing my experiences with my father rather therapeutic. Besides, what better way to celebrate his life--and honor his death--than to write down these moments candidly, honestly from the heart. So I will do as I see fit.

I leave for LA later this morning to say my final goodbye. I will be back soon.

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