We’re getting older and older, and older /
And always a little further out of the way
– Adam Duritz
I felt it today: that late August breeze that blows through my memories like a whisper that reminds me how another warm, happy season is coming to an end. It’s cool and it’s soft and it foretells how we can look forward to another brief, quiet and colourful interlude before the cold weather and dark nights befalls us again.
Every time the August breeze blows, it takes me back to happier times — times that were good but are now gone forever, and memories that are benchmarks for everything else to come. None of it will never measure up to the expectations of that heartsick nostalgia that pangs a sentimental fool.
Dr. Seuss once said “Don’t cry because it’s over, smile because it happened.” It’s good advice, but like most advice that’s good, it’s hard to swallow because good advice is born from the same kind of wisdom that you can only get from suffering through heartbreak and regret of having it learned it first hand.
Without the pain, it’s too easy to take wisdom for granted. It comes off as cliched and common sense, but like our por and miserable ancestors in the Garden of Eden, we’re a little too eager to trade our ignorance and our bliss for a fleeting glimpse into the darkness and a misguided sense that we understand the meaning of love and life and and everything that stems from it.
After all, when “you gaze into the abyss the abyss gazes into you”, and the mere memory of that darkness and mystery is something that can haunt you and your dreams for the rest of your days. Once something has been seen, it cannot be unseen, and that kind of jadedness and those kind of scars are something that even the gods we create for ourselves can’t forgive us for.
Our gods: we created in our own image, so they’re vain and they’re petty, and they won’t suffer us sharing in the mysteries of the darker side of life. That’s why we created them: to lift the the burden of knowledge from our shoulders and live up to expectation we could never meet ourself. But like bad parents we expect them to endure our hypocrisy and all the other shortcoming they inherited from us, and somehow come out more well-adjusted and knowing better than us.
But we reap what we sow, so our eyes look forward while our memories look back, and they harken for a return to something that was once true, but is no longer so, because they are flawed and they are sentimental, and they don’t know any better.