Did You Have a Good World? Recollecting Beauty…

“Is everybody in? Is everybody in? Is everybody in? The ceremony is about to begin. The entertainment for this evening is not new. You’ve seen this entertainment through and through. You have seen your birth, your life, your death….you may recall all the rest. Did you have a good world when you died? Enough to base a movie on?” ~ Jim Morrison, American Prayer

I think about these words by Jim Morrison probably more than I should. To me, they remind me to live in the now…in the light of the day. They prompt me to ask if I’m missing anything. If I’m doing everything I can be doing. For myself. For others.

I leave you with this year's most precious new arrival...
A gratuitous Charlie pic…

I am having a sappy day again. A day of pondering… I think about missed opportunities. I think about crushing others and how not to. Walk softly and you will not scatter the dreams of those in your wake. Do unto others. Skip the light fantastic…fandango. Let’s think about life for a while. Every once in a while something comes up that illuminates things for me. Makes me aware. Makes me appreciative. Makes me question my intentions and hope that I’m doing enough. Makes me wonder and wander.

Today, there is no sun shining. But that’s a matter of perspective. It’s always there. It doesn’t go away. If we need a little light in our lives, it’s sometimes up to us to put it there. We can’t wait around for the clouds to dissipate. I tend to lean towards music as therapy for the dark days. I’m pretty sure I mentioned that here before. Nothing brings out the sun better than the right beat. And beautiful lyrics to accompany it.

Like Stevie Wonder says in Sir Duke, “Music is a world within itself, with a language we all understand. With an equal opportunity for all to sing, dance and clap their hands…” It truly is a transformative art-form.

Sometimes, it’s not only happy songs that lift me. Sometimes maudlin or thought-provoking does the same thing.

THE THE – Perfect… Oh, what a perfect day To think about my silly world My feet are firmly screwed to the floor What is there to fear from such a regular world? Passing by a cemetery I think of all the little hopes and dreams That lie lifeless and unfilled beneath the soil I see an old man fingering his perishing flesh He tells himself he was a good man and did good things Amused and confused by life’s little ironies He swallows his bottle of distilled damnation

I believe we have one chance to dance this globe. Regrets can eat up a lot of that time. Lord knows I know that truth. But I don’t want to be hopes and dreams lying lifeless and unfulfilled beneath the soil. I want to go to that big sleep having done everything I ever wanted to do. Fearless and tired and ready for the nap… Another THE THE song that I love… This Is The Day

Well you didn’t wake up this morning ’cause you didn’t go to bed You were watching the whites of your eyes turn red The calendar on your wall is ticking the days off You’ve been reading some old letters You smile and think how much you’ve changed All the money in the world couldn’t buy back those days

I find their lyrics to be so nostalgia inducing. Not just now, so many years later…but even when I first heard them back in the 80s. I feel like I’m taking a walk in the sunshine, pondering life, when I listen to THE THE.
You pull back the curtains, and the sun burns into your eyes You watch a plane flying across a clear blue sky This is the day your life will surely change This is the day when things fall into place
I’ve always been waiting for that day. But the truth is EVERY DAY CAN BE THAT DAY. Every heartbeat you take is an opportunity. Things can fall into place just as easily on a cloudy day as on a sunny one.
You could’ve done anything, if you’d wanted And all your friends and family think that you’re lucky But the side of you they’ll never see Is when you’re left alone with the memories That hold your life together like glue
We are all members of a collective and simultaneously islands unto ourselves. It’s how we interact that matters. And how we use the time when we are well and truly alone that matters. The last lines above are another example of how perspective is everything. To others, we can appear to contain the sun in our eyes and in our every step. To ourselves, we can be slothing around in a mire of glue…living and reliving bad moments from our past. Or vise-versa. The trick is to find that magical place where we live on the outside as we live on the inside.
Victoria Harbour, Hong Kong...
Victoria Harbour, Hong Kong…
To everything, there is a season. Absolutely, there is a time to wallow. Wallowing is therapeutic. But not overly helpful in the grand scheme of things. This life is so precious. We string days together one after the other until we get to the end of the line. And in the end, we don’t want to think, ‘I wish I could have…’ ‘I wanted to…’ ‘I thought I would have been able to…’ etc, etc, etc. We want to have had a good world when we die.
Daisy photobomb!
Daisy photobomb!
We want the end to be a recollection of the beauty we have amassed. A soft last kiss to send us ever forward into the next adventure. In the end, there is only beauty. The beauty of emotions, the beauty of memories, the beauty of love and light and laughter. The rest? Like the clouds that cover our darker days, it’ll all dissipate. Clouds don’t have the strength to be eternal. Not like light. Not like love.
A snapshot of Tai O, Hong Kong...a little fishing village I visited last week while I was Asia.
A snapshot of Tai O, Hong Kong…a little fishing village I visited last week while I was in Asia.

This is the day, your life will surely change…

By Kevin Craig

Author, Poet, Playwright. Author of The Camino Club, Billions of Beautiful Hearts, and Book of Dreams, all from Duet Books, the LGBTQ Young Adult imprint of Chicago Review Press. Other books: Pride Must Be A Place, Half Dead & Fully Broken, Burn Baby Burn Baby, The Reasons, Sebastian's Poet, and Summer on Fire.

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