I’m sixty-two. As I age, the desire to work grows ever stronger — the urge, the need, the understanding that it’s as much a matter of health as it is accomplishment — health physical and mental, a kind of spirit-health, which comes of living as lightly as possible on this earth and in this body, this body compromised and informed by years of stress and foolishness, clouded by ego and ignorance, and rejuvenated by forest paths and waterfalls, green fields, stone steps, graveyards, and cypresses. A sense of purpose: that, if granted even more life, it may be a rich and productive garden. I might even be a statue in that garden; but after a night of dreams and starlight, passersby will see that the statue has moved, and that they, too, have moved. Seventy, eighty, ninety, one hundred — numbered in years, months, weeks, days, hours, minutes, or seconds — one blessed moment, one pebble, one pond, one endless outward-inward ring, one croaking frog, one universal reply, one breath, one song, one joyful letter home, its end lost in a postscript of mist, apart and alone in its weightlessness.
And if these words are proof of my senility, then what better way to live, than without regret, in the kind illusion I’ve been given? It’s an illusion, perhaps, not unlike your own. May you love it and live it well.