When I started this blog I knew my dad would love it; after all, they were his volumes that all my childhood were in the bookcase in the upstairs hall, before I shipped them across the country to the bookcase in this upstairs hall. After a couple of weeks, when I proved to myself that I could do this every day, I opened up the blog and told him. He did love it, and on days when I didn't feel like reading or writing I did it anyway, because I knew he'd be checking in, and his enjoyment of it would keep me going and made me feel good.
Today my dad received the last rites. It's time for me to go back across the country one last time on his behalf, like I did last week; but last week he could tell Mad Men-like stories about working for the Travelers' Insurance in Boston in 1960, and today he can't talk at all. And no longer will I sit at my desk here in LA, and smack a post about one of these readings across the Net and wait for him to return it. Our game is called on account of darkness.
I'll return at some point in the next couple of weeks. I want to see the year out -- now more than ever, really.
Melanoma got him, and quickly. Wear your sunscreen.
UPDATE: I suddenly remembered that he copied out these lines (from "Arkansas Traveller," by Charles Wright) and had them on his desk:
Knot by knot I untie myself from the past
And let it rise away from me like a balloon.
What a small thing it becomes.
What a bright tweak at the vanishing point, blue on blue.