better things

Fourteen years ago today I put my best friend out of his pain. My familiar, my zeroth born, my companion.

He did not give up easy. Weak as the rest of his body had become, his breath labored hard for what seemed like eternity. He wanted always to be there for me. His heart was so strong, for running and playing and going wherever I would go.

For a long time afterwards, when I was driving alone in the car I would play this on CD, singing along as best I could with Ray Davies:

Here’s wishing you the bluest sky
And hoping something better comes tomorrow
Hoping all the verses rhyme
And the very best of choruses to
Follow all the doubt and sadness
I know that better things are on the way

Here’s hoping all the days ahead
Won’t be as bitter as the ones behind you
Be an optimist instead
And somehow happiness will find you
Forget what happened yesterday
I know that better things are on the way

Last week Helen-Faye spoke on the panel that I arranged for class, to answer students’ questions they asked of their future selves fifty years from now. She reminded us grief comes on its own schedule, there is no right or wrong to it.

My friend continues to be with me wherever I am.

This morning I sang “Better Things” while strumming on the guilele.

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