The poet Keats wrote, “I have been half in love with easeful Death,” and I go, “No way! Really? Me, too!”

I can’t remember a time when I was afraid of death. Lest you think I’m just begging to get my bluff called, let me tell you that I came within a few minutes of checking out from anaphylactic shock–hope that’s spelled correctly, ’cause the spell check hasn’t got a clue–and I wasn’t afraid then, either.

People who aren’t afraid of death scare a lot of people, which is one reason why Goth stuff freaks so many people out. It makes sense that it does–if you aren’t afraid of death, maybe you aren’t tied strongly enough to life. Maybe you don’t respect life. Maybe you don’t respect other people’s lives. Those fears are understandable, but usually overblown.

I’ll admit, though, that I’ve had times when I’ve been a lot more distressed about living than I’ve ever been about dying. When I reached a point at which I felt the pull of the restful dark was much, much stronger than the pull of the kaleidescope of living, I went and Talked to Somebody.

She gave me a project that’s been a rich joy ever since: She told me to make a list of the things that made me happy. The little things, minute things, not things like elections being won by people I voted for or the people who grace my life with their presence, but things that are too small to matter… but do.

Every so often, I think I’ll post things from my list. Here is the first:

Skies as blue and clear as David McCallum’s eyes. I’ve been grooving on that since the ’60’s, when he played Ilya Kuryakin on The Man From U.N.C.L.E. The clarity and purity of those skies are truly celestial. That those qualities can show up in human eyes… here on earth, to see in a human…. That makes me want to dance.

MA

writing prompt: What color eyes makes your character feel some emotion more strongly than any other color?

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