It seems a bit pessimistic to type this as if it will be my last correspondence with the living, web world. Yet planes do crash. And people do talk about giving their loved ones roses "while they're still alive to enjoy them." But no one talks about the dead person. Should not we also say the things we intend to say while we're still alive to say them? Or maybe that's why I write, to speak from the grave, demand, question, contemplate from an aether of sorts. or a prison much like death.
Leading up to this sojourn over the happy sea, I have accomplished several of my goals. That sterling prose has been mailed (burnished, more like). I still await rejection letters from a variety of places, along with confirmation of publication from a couple others (that is, evidence of their having followed through). An alum even got back to me about querying agents. I had a burger last night under a conversation with an actor friend of mine about how exactly one, in his profession, solicits and secures representation. I guess the answer, succinctly, is like every other answer about how we prove ourselves good enough to warrant attention, be it accommodation, agency, or acknowledgment. I suppose I shall wait until I have more tangible evidence of that.
And the words, which I will deliver as officiant of the wedding for which I am travelling, I say are near completion. This of course, is woefully untrue. I look at them and think how shabby and unfocused they are, how unclean. I've woken up several times this week, worried that I had written something terrible I only could have conceived of in nightmare. "I don't plan on saying that, do I?" I whispered in the darkness, in a cell of my own design. I never went so far as to turn my machine on and verify, but I'd read through them the next day and be a little be relieved and a little bit nauseated. I keep hoping I won't have a blunder or misstep, and ruin these nice my friends' happiest day.
Morpheus said to Neo once, "There is a difference between knowing the path and walking the path," which is helpful in this case because we never really know if we're ready for what we're about to be burdened with. We prepare our skills, we believe in our talents, and we bolster our spirit and hope that that will be enough. I have the little understated journal with the tassel to put the words in that I'm simply going to read. I've spent weeks looking through books and talking to people smarter than me, and wiser, about how to conduct it. I've committed years to the craft of words to the end of transmitting a message. One could say that I'm ready to go back to Ireland.
To this day I have no idea why my friend asked me, of all people, to do this. I mean really why. I think if I pull this off, and we're all laughing in the afterwards of the beautifully setting sun, I think maybe I will have earned my answer. But therein lies the difference, I guess between the faith of someone who has a day named after him, and the drive to know of someone like me. Or maybe I'm walking a path of sorts, too.