Tuesday, August 25, 2009

So let us eat cake

Time. For mountains and for hummingbirds, it passes. You can't stop it and, in spite of a proliferation of expensive products claiming otherwise, you can't even slow it down. Not for a moment. For each moment that passes, something is added and something is taken away. Summer has now ended; our kids, in clothes a size bigger than last year's, have carted their new backpacks, their notebooks and sharpened pencils, back to school. Someone else sits at the desk they sat in just months ago.

The end of summer/start of school year rituals have always coincided with my birthday which may be why, no matter how far past the years of my own school days, the end of August is more deeply embedded with the passage of time than the end of the calendar year or any other recurring event.

This year's birthday will be the first I've ever celebrated without my grandfather, on whose birthday I was born. He died in March. He would be 104 tomorrow. Even if I'm as fortunate as he was in longevity, I'm already halfway through my little bit of time on this planet. Aging doesn't really bother me. Running out of time does. Whether you measure it in minutes or moons, you only get one slice of it. Tomorrow I burn up one more candle. Make my slice coconut.