I’m currently up to my neck in last-minute loose ends and paperwork as I prepare my ship of self for a northwesterly voyage to the northlands of southeast Alaska; though my sailing date is Tuesday or Wednesday, my plans are fluid and I am, as yet, still taking on cargo.
And yet tonight, after hockey games and flying and general lounging about, my mind is bent on writing. Stories haunt me, you see, lurking silent shapeless shadows behind the eyes with beauty and depth akin to “caverns measureless to man”, challenging me to reach in and find the loose ends. Each thread in the lives of characters and stories and worlds sits alone, unconnected to its destiny but ever awaiting enweavement.
I am ever reminded of my lost love and the cut threads of stories that none shall ever know, those which formed the tapestry of a life cut short and, with nothing left to bind them, fell into chaos as their momentum was lost. Time weighs but lightly on the well of emotion that ripples below the surface of my thoughts, ebbing and flowing with its tidal calm, lipping and lapping at the feet of my characters and inspiring me to keep the looms of mind at full stretch.
And yet the stories I write are nothing, and the characters nothing, and the worlds nothing, and they could sing and dance and laugh and die beneath a cruel and open, loving sky, and give their lives to save each other and nothing would matter, and galaxies and universes could be born and die without the slightest care… if not for the readers.
Readers and their canvas-sailed imaginations, painted with the lives and thoughts of people and places who would never exist without them. Readers gliding through the waters of my emotions, rejoicing with my characters and crying for my loss. All media are one in the mind, and even as we sail our lonely voyages on unrelenting and unforgiving seas we can rest contented that somewhere, someone is reading our story, seeing through our eyes and hoping we make it through.
Every hero dies alone; make your story worth reading and the threads of your life will remain in a tapestry larger than your own. Make your story worth reading, and you’ll never be truly forgotten.
And don’t forget to read.