I have to admit, even though it’s well documented on this very site that Thanksgiving is not my favorite holiday, I really appreciate that it falls on a Thursday every year. With my posting schedule, it means I get a bit of a break, and as much as I love writing reviews, it always feels good to have a little vacation from the ordinary. This year, for the first time in nearly a decade, I’m not at home for the holiday, so it’s especially busy. Nevertheless, with my reduced posting this fall, I didn’t want to leave you completely bereft, so I’m sharing this poem. The holiday season is often a time for seeing old friends, and this piece reminds me of the fragile, exquisite nature of friendships that last over time and distance.
A happy holiday to those of you celebrating today. Take a few minutes to yourself amid whatever chaos and food and drama might surround you. Allow yourself to be grateful for all the things that have gone right this year, and try to set down some of your burdens and grief. Think hard on those who have less, and remind yourself, whatever your traditions may be, to be thankful for the people who touch your heart, even if they exist only in the pages of a book or in a memory…
About Friends, Brian Jones
The good thing about friends
is not having to finish sentences.
I sat a whole summer afternoon with my friend once
on a river bank, bashing heels on the baked mud
and watching the small chunks slide into the water
and listening to them – plop plop plop.
He said, ‘I like the twigs when they…you know…
like that.’ I said, ‘There’s that branch…’
We both said, ‘Mmmm’. The river flowed and flowed
and there were lots of butterflies, that afternoon.
I first thought there was a sad thing about friends
when we met twenty years later.
We both talked hundreds of sentences,
taking care to finish all we said,
and explain it all very carefully,
as if we’d been discovered in places
we should not be, and were somehow ashamed.
I understood then what the river meant by flowing.