To Keep From Crying I Started To Sing

Alone In The Woods Of Cape Breton
July 24, ˜82

Saying goodbye to Mike left me empty. I could not shake my melancholy,
and coupled with the thought that my father would not greet me upon my
return home depressed me severely. He had died last year. My defense
mechanism kicked in, though. To keep from crying I started to sing. I
sang morning, afternoon, and on into the evening—until my voice gave
out. That kind of emotional intensity brought with it a very high
level of sensitivity. The scenery became animated. In Cape Breton the
scenery was beautiful anyway, but with my heightened sensitivity, it
jumped out at me. Even though I had bicycled through the same area
only three or four days ago, and the sun was shining to boot, I was
now experiencing the mountains, inlets, bays, creeks, streams, and
rivers in a totally different way. Everything was absolutely gorgeous.
I was still depressed, tired, and wet, but somehow that whole
experience had become sublime!

I’m alone now, in the woods, listening to the pitter-patter of rain
on my tent, with an ache in my stomach that won’t go away. Mike and I
are physically, as well as mentally apart, and I am sad because of it.
This feeling of emptiness is not strange. “Breaking up is hard to do,”
isn’t that what the song says? Am I really breaking up with Mike? Am I
in love with him? Was I in love with him all along? Is this why I
can’t sleep? Love is not a dirty word, is it? I love Mike. There, I’ve
said it. It’s in writing; I can see it. I feel better. Don’t ask me
why. I just do. The pain of separation is less now. Don’t ask me why.
I don’t know. The distance remains; I can’t change that, but
boundaries do not contain love. Mike is a beautiful person. Maybe less
beautiful then he used to be (I am to), but love isn’t that fickle.
Out of a sense of loss, one suffers, but love survives. It’s
ubiquitous. As the breath of the universe, love penetrates all.
Wounded lovers look to the healing powers of time, but love,
unconditional love for sure, renders time meaningless. The divine
becomes Divine through love; and I am its witness. Sweet dreams, Mike.
We’ll be together again. I’m sure of it. Goodbye—and thanks!

July 26

Yesterday, when I arrived back in Antigonish, I found a note attached
to the bulletin board. Bill was known for his planning abilities, so I
wasn’t surprised to find a note informing me that he would be in on
the one-o’clock train. I was looking forward to seeing him. I was also,
however, a little uncertain about biking all the way back to Michigan
with him. Time would tell on that one.

After borrowing a map, I figured my route and I will have to average
72 miles a day for the next 25 days in order to get back to Michigan
on schedule. Probably that is an unrealistic figure, but it is
certainly something to strive for. And, that bit of information will
help me impress upon Bill that I am not into unnecessary delays.

I’m presently sitting in the Antigonish youth hostel. I just had a
nice chat with two young ladies from France who are backpacking
Canada. Last night I took in a movie—The Road Warrior. That was fun,
and now I feel rested and clean, and am ready to meet Bill. I’m kind
of excited.


About bwinwnbwi

About me: Marvin Gaye’s song, "What’s Going On" was playing on the jukebox when I went up to the counter and bought another cup of coffee. When I got back, the painting on the wall next to where I was sitting jumped out at me, the same way it had done many times before. On it was written a diatribe on creativity. It was the quote at the bottom, though, that brought me back to this seat time after time. The quote had to do with infinity; it went something like this: Think of yourself as being in that place where infinity comes together in a point; where the infinite past and the infinite future meet, where you are at right now. The quote was attributed to Hermann Hesse, but I didn’t remember reading it in any of the books that I had read by him, so I went out and bought Hesse’s last novel, Magister Ludi. I haven’t found the quote yet, but I haven't tired of looking for it either.
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3 Responses to To Keep From Crying I Started To Sing

  1. Hermionejh says:

    What a beautiful, bittersweet post. I too, sing, to keep from crying, and to raise my courage, my spirits, my hope. Cheers. ♥

    • bwinwnbwi says:

      On my bicycle trips I always did a lot of singing. Finally, on this trip (my last) I spent a good deal of time before the trip writing down song lyrics in a notebook that, while biking, I attached to the top of my handlebars. It worked for a little while but the hassle was such that I soon went back to singing whatever came to mind with whatever words came to mind. I remember there being a lot of Joni Mitchell and Jimmy Buffet in the written lyrics; the Buffet being easier to remember than the Mitchell. Thanks for the nice comment. Take care.

  2. Wounded lovers look to the healing powers of time, but love,… renders time meaningless

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