When I was a youngster, a family from Chicago moved into the place around the corner. Thirty-odd years later and we’ve lost another local patriarch. The thing that got me at the visitation was when I told the family how much Mr. H meant to my brother. My brother’s had a tough walk, and Mr. H would just show up now and then… No hugging, no big to-do, just a constant peripheral presence. That steady everyday we so long for in the wake of catastrophe. Mr. H knew how to provide that. I wrote about him in Coop, how he stopped by one day with Big Ed and it comforted me to know my brother and his family were supported by roughnecks capable of great gentleness.
Been a stretch here where I’ve posted about deaths of several elders significant in my life. I don’t share these things for pity’s sake nor am I fishing for condolence. Rather, I wish to remove the seed corn cap for just a moment to recognize the trail that has been blazed (or more often: quietly trod) and check my own path.
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