Monday 22 August 2016
Captain Midnight, Hedda and I are in Crickhowell, Powys for a few days. Yesterday would have been Chris’s 50th birthday so we went to The Bear (very appropriately named, we thought) for a Gin and Tonic to mark the occasion. At 7.00pm we raised our glasses to join friends around the world in a virtual toast to her memory and to wish her a Happy Birthday.
Hedda asked me to tell her more about Chris. For nearly an hour, she listened as I spoke about Chris’s life and work; her art-making and clowning; her intellectual prowess and inspired teaching. I spoke about her illness and her death; her courage and creativity; her enthusiasm for life and her gift for friendship.
We talked about our experiences of love and loss and finding love again. Then we moved from the sofa and took our table for dinner with Ted at our feet, turned our gaze toward each other, and began to make plans for the days ahead. I bathed in the warmth of Hedda’s brilliant smile as we spoke, and I felt my heart expand.
It was a pivotal moment, in which – so to speak – my centre of gravity shifted from the past to the present, and to the possibility of creating a shared future with this wonderful woman. I was ready to love again.
As Goethe said: “Life belongs to the living.”