POEM INSPIRED BY THE DEATH OF AN ACTOR

PART OF THE THIS IS THE MOMENT SERIES

 

I look out at the garden this morning.
It’s late August, the tomato plants
are lush giants
and all of the other fruits
and vegetables around them
spread up,
spread out, jungle-like,
ready to claim the sun.
** Instead, today, the rain pours noisily heavily— in lashes— saturating the green and the earth and the air surrounding the garden which will soon give up the last of its fruit (we covet) left bare when we pick them all— greedily (having shared with the furry scavengers). I know the leaves will one day yellow, wrinkle, die. The last of the squash and tomatoes will shrivel and discolour— as we all do. It is our shared nature. But then I think— the perennials of the garden have their deep roots and so, live to bloom in another season. I look down at my feet and think— I have no such roots. And my seasons are running out. Then, the faces of my sons bloom, unseen by any but me— conjured by my mind and as real as
this computer screen. They’ve come to remind me that my children live— and their children will live as long as gardens grow and roots find entanglement— in this life.     August 29th, 2020 Hudson, QC
Avery, Clare; Micromegas: A Day it Rained; CW+; http://www.artuk.org/artworks/micromegas-a-day-it-rained-178463

NOTE:

I went to sleep last night having read about the death of Chadwick Boseman from cancer and woke this morning to learn that it was colorectal cancer that killed him at 43.

I learned from this piece, that he had been diagnosed in 2016 with Stage 3 cancer, which then progressed. And so, I realized that he had made almost every one of the great movies that caused his career to skyrocket and brought him fame and stardom, while sick–while undergoing chemo and radiation therapy.

This is inconceivable to me…How strong must he have been…It hurts to think about what he put himself through.

And it fills me with compassionate sorrow, that this man reached the apex of his life as an artist knowing he was dying. That both journeys coincided.

I understand that he walked every step of the way knowing what it all meant. How important some of it was, and how insignificant other parts were…

Simon has told me several times before that people of African descent have a genetic predisposition to colorectal cancer, and I write this because going for a routine colonoscopy should be top of the list for so many beautiful humans I love…

And so I woke up this morning and find myself crying for a man I never knew or even met…but who brought dignity and his singular, powerful artistic vision to the world.

“The role of the artist is exactly the same as the role of the lover. If I love you, I have to make you conscious of the things you don’t see.”
James Baldwin;