Sitting at my laptop; early morning; no one about; birds tweeting kinda in the background. Reflecting on life.
It’s so awfully true that there are two things you have to get your head round. And here I agree with people much cleverer than myself. It’s really of no use spending your life being resilient – even to resist. The two conditions, dynamics, states of mind … whatever you term them, however you take them onboard, however you need to accept their implications, imply giving up and giving in. Accepting the now; resigning oneself to its future.
And the future doesn’t lie at all in resigning oneself to the shit that goes down. You do have to choose. And such choices inevitably will mean including some places and people – and excluding others.
I have spent my life trying to love those who hate me; who hate what I am; and who hate the ways of looking and seeing and doing I represent. And as a result I bear the real scars of abuse: serious abuse; mental abuse; torrential abuse sometimes; floods of abuse.
The two things, then, you have to get your head round? The first is that there are places which are good for one, places which are bad. Places to be visited only; places to be visited occasionally; places to stay and feel at home with; places to flit through and feel out-of-sorts about.
My places now exist: Liverpool, as a place to work; Dublin, as a place where I choose one day to die; Salamanca, as a place of familial re-encounter over the next few years, as offspring grow up and come together at Christmas, during the occasional summer, maybe even for the processional magnificence of the city’s violent Easter …
And whilst choosing these three places doesn’t exclude the visiting of any other, it clearly doesn’t include notable places from my past (where not my passed): and here I am talking about my Croatian side and the city of Zagreb I once so fell in love with; about my childhood and then that later early twenty-something place of Chester; about my first years in Spain when I lived in Burgos and brought up a young family; about times I studied and lifed my hopes of a better future in Madrid; about the yearning I had in the early 2000s to become a global citizen located in New York … all this and more, which rises up from my evermore present memories and mental souvenirs, are things that now necessarily belong to a somewhere I shall never return to.
The second thing you have to get your head round?
That’s easier and, simultaneously, more difficult.
It’s the people you surround yourself with.
And in a way, by choosing place … well … you are beginning to choose people. If not people to be with, then people to be without.
I know the kind of people who are good for me. I also think I know the sort I can be good for myself.
I don’t care very much what you think on this and that. I do care ever so much how you approach the analysing of the wonderful, cruel, crazed and gorgeous world which surrounds and abounds us.
I want, I need, to be with people who think in the way I think; who capture my ideas at their first glance and their quiver; who deliver a reply which is wilder than my wildest dreams; who, essentially, make out of art and words and pictures and thoughts the world I want to experience.
All that is left me is to find these people.
And love unbound, at any time.