The quotes came first this time. They seemed melancholy to me, whispering of change, illusion, loss.
My life has been all about change this year, as I rush headlong into a series of new adventures: feverishly reinventing myself professionally, moving towards retirement from my current career, coping with the very real challenges of growing older in a world so different from the one into which I was born.
When I was a child there appeared to be more permanence in the world. The difference between good and evil was clear. If one followed some basic rules, life was safe and stable. People worked hard and progressed towards a comfortable old age.
Was all of that perceived permanence and safety illusory? Or are there still constants, a few remaining rock-bottom certainties in which to believe?
I am blessed in my family and friends. The choices that life offers seem diverse and exilherating. And yet I feel the tears behind the laughter as the year draws to a close and the cosmos reels in its crazy dance.
"The countless stars, which to our human eye
Are fixed and steadfast, each in proper place,
Forever bound to changeless points in space,
Rush with our sun and planets through the sky,
And like a flock of birds still onward fly;
Returning never whence began their race,
They speed their ceaseless way with gleaming face
As though God bade them win Infinity..."
-John Lancaster Spalding, The Starry Host
"Neutron Star 2004 by NASA (NASA)" by pingnews.com