Feb 21, 2015

She's gone now.  It's been 8 years, or 9.  The truth is, I don't remember exactly.  I remember hearing the news.  I remember the airplane and the drive and confronting the Russian madame. I remember using some very foul language, in an effort to unnerve that little scene they had going; the Master's teachings; the whole communal conceit.  Well, not a conceit; it was a commune and it worked for the most part, but of course the politics were horrific.  A Canadian ranch and refuge for people on the run.  That's true.  Everybody there was on the run and she not least.  So after I had a my tantrum, which I enjoyed enormously, the Russian had me sit next to her at dinner, which I can tell you is never a boisterous affair.  Not even any slurping.  Just heads bowed to their soup bowls. "Could you pass the water?" someone might say.  After dinner, the Russian had me tell stories about who my mother had been before coming to the south of France and then later to British Columbia.  I told them and people were stunned — that she had once been a terrific tennis player, moving back and forth along the baseline like the lioness she imagined she was.... And some other stories.  But then I suddenly couldn't go on.  What good is it? And so now her memory is like a light down through the fog and I'm St. Ex, lost and not trusting, drawn to that light and trying to figure out what it means and how to deal with it, whether to see it as a landing light or a trick.