The rain has come. Though thirty five degrees still condense the air outside, waterdrops come and cling like the eggs of flies, or fig seeds, to your dry skin. It is now the season of hope, again, though in order to fly one must first lose sight of the nest.
An olden man, ninety years old, has presided over the lunch table today. His eyes, blue-rimmed and resolute like the many pickaxe points he broke as a miner, crucified my softened frame to the pillars of his vinyard, under which we spent many an hour in conversation and dissolution. I wanted to honour this man’s patience by being there if by happenchance his last hour came upon us as we spoke.
It has not come, it may never come. He is immortal. As a frail boy of twelve, no taller than the cane he carved from a cherry tree and still uses as a walking stick, he led his donkey, alone and starving, through forty miles of hills and scrubland, until the wolfpack scented their trail. Pray he did and walk he tried, until it seemed that their fate was certain. This ninety year old man has been a miner, a farmer, thrice a husband and still he carries his own weight with a word of power.
These are this man’s genes, his heritage, such the will and the legacy, that from blue rimmed eyes and waning bloodlines make it possible for you to read these lines I, another heir, am writing.
The boy saw a wavering light in the distance. It seemed to float erratically in the wee hours. After some time or a few desperate steps the light began to clink.
The boy’s mother, alone and barefoot, with the house dog at her heels, had come; she had waded half the county, half the way, with a pitchfork across her back, to find her son sprinting for his life, with the pack beast and their sacks of coal at the large. Still the wolves came on.
I do not know and he told me not to care, never to lose my temper, or my patience, to be like the rock around which the raging river flows. The great old man under his own vine, we both soaked in his own wine, assured me that it is never worth, never ever worth, to outstrip yourself, to transmute into a wild, savage thing you’ll regret to be, for any puny matter, even a shitload of puny matters.
The rain is coming, I will drive south tonight. I have seen how freedom pays and the due tribute that the laws of life are sure to deliver if a man, by truth and humility, sticks to the plan.
I will meet this man again before rain and tears become one. For now, these words are written for the sake of freedom and fire, freedom and fire.