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June 2010

Banjos and Crows

The other distressing thing about illness (to continue from yesterday's post) is the number of things that it causes you to miss. (I turn into a mopey little five year old, I swear, when others are having fun and I can't come.) On Sunday, it was the Sir Lanval wrap party, kicked off with a talk by my friend Ari Berk (writer and mythologist), who co-wrote the film's screenplay and is in town with his family for a couple of weeks. Last night, it was Howard's band, Nosey Crows, playing tunes at an old pub in the next village over . . . which is precisely the sort of evening that I love best. <sigh>

Once again I look to Guru Tilly for guidance. She doesn't like being left out either, she vastly prefers it whenever we take her along. But she doesn't waste time regretting what she can't have, or regretting things that have passed; she's a little zen master in the art of Living in the Present. Most other animals are too, of course; and it's among the many things they have to teach us two-legged folk.

One of the songs that the Nosey Crows do well is a cover of the Pogues' classic, Dirty Old Town (above). This one goes out to all of the crows this morning, musical and otherwise. . . including the crows in this poem, and this one. It's a beautiful morning, in a hushed and misty way. I'm still sick, but it's okay. I'm breathing in these green hills, and I'm living in the present. And it's all good.

   Bird Girls

June 2010 6

June 2010

We've been having beautiful weather here in Devon, which Tilly is enjoying above by helping Howard water the garden and doing the Summer Dance (a companion piece to her Winter Dance, here). As for me, I'm down with a nasty summer cold. Ugh. It always seemed to me that those of us with chronic health problems should be exempt from getting ordinary illnesses too -- kind of a Get Out of Jail Free card for time already served. Ah well. Someone please pass the tissues....

On the subject of illness, I love this post on Andrew Sullivan's blog. (This sentence stopped me in my tracks: "You have to own the illness and then own an identity that is so much more than the illness." Lordy, that's so true.) And I'm determined to appreciate this beautiful summer day despite illness, deadline worries, and a head full of cotton wool. Tilly is my Guru in this ambition. Nothing, absolutely nothing, diminishes her joy, open-heartedness, and love of life.

I've added two novels to the On the Shelf column to the right, by the way, which you must not miss. They are fantastic in every sense of the word.