Hi folks….   I’ve been thinking about the blog almost every day since my old one was nuked at Blogger and haven’t resolved the main issue of how to proceed, to be honest.

I’m very sorry that the story of ‘Matty’ has been silenced this way, but I also don’t want to proceed in the wrong way, giving short shrift to each remembrance, simply to satisfy a censor somewhere, whether that happens to be someone that stops by and feels an evangelistic need to classify my life as evil and report the blog as abusive, or a mindless overseer who never takes the time to actually read my writing in its entirety before pushing that digital button and decimating my efforts out here.

I’d be lying if I said it didn’t bother me– It was a LOT of hard work, putting the remembrances to print and for once in my life, I thought it was safe for the unvarnished stories to be exposed… My hope was  that the precious kids in my life and the people who gain something by reading my  story would understand that even though I lived a secret life, there is no longer a need to do that… That time and knowledge has changed all of that.

That even gay people are human and love, like other people…

I thought I was resolving all those issues in my head in the past few years, and even a week ago, felt more certain on how to proceed, when a strange thing happened…

I was driving ‘north’ to bring my Godson home for a necessary surgery to repair a torn ACL in his right knee… I took the day off from work and left that Friday morning feeling… uh… jubilant, I guess. It’s kind of hard to describe… It was an absolutely gorgeous day, especially for the middle of March, here in New England. 60º or so; bright sunshine and wispy, scattered clouds that seemed more like  jet contrails than clouds.

I got into the Prius that my Godson’s parents had loaned me for the trip- a cool little car with alien features, including a combination electric/gas driven powerhouse that hums in the battery mode, and made me feel like I was driving a golf cart at times! It was also equipped with a computer screen that 3 years ago, when the car was new, gave it an ultra- modern ambiance… Now, to be honest, it almost seemed a little dated as I found I-91  and headed north, towards the ‘deep woods’ of New England.

It was all good for a while. I hadn’t been on the road for a long time, at least by myself, and the sense of freedom and adventure was invigorating… I know– I should get out more!!  lol  Well, that may be true, but the past 10 years have kind off handcuffed me with the responsibilities around caring for elderly parents and some unfortunate events in my own life that put more focus on my health than I would have liked.

But, that friday was to be different. I wasn’t going to think about any of that! I was going to enjoy the trip for what it was… Something that used to be commonplace in my life. It felt SO nice.

I left about 1 P.M. and the roads were clear- only light traffic, the worst of which was in the immediate vicinity of the capital city and that was nothing to speak of… Soon, I had reached the widened areas of I-91 and the speed limit increased to 65 mph and I was sailing along, mostly in the left lane, reveling in the tight steering and comfortable seat that felt so different from the lumbering work truck that I am accustomed to driving. I think I was smiling. It felt like that. I played with the cruise control and managed to set it at 73 mph, which seemed to be slightly above he average speed but about 10 mph below the whirlwind speeds of the aggressive few out there on that beautiful day.

I think I reached the border of Vermont in only 1 3/4 hours or so, and exited onto a mid- sized route that would take me to my final destination as it wandered through farmland and backwoods and little enclaves that haven’t changed much in the past 80 years.

The road glistened with little embedded mica chips and snaked through some of the most beautiful country, and I felt like I was home… I don’t know why, but it struck me that way.  I guess I was feeling at peace with myself and a little contemplative and my mind started to wander, much like it has, in the past few years as I recall the little moments in my life that made me who I am today. I drifted back and remembered the construction project that I had completed on my Godson’s house, some 8 years back…. An addition that he had coined ‘a subtraction’, just to annoy me and  get the reaction that he came to crave- my upturned eyebrows and the mock attacks punctuated by his fake, ‘little girl’ screams, as I called them, as he rocketed through the hallways of his house with me in hot pursuit… Fast kid… ‘little monkey’ as I called him… Punk… my favorite nickname. I won’t tell you what he called me!!  lol   NOPE!!

I drove on, remembering and smiling. The ‘boy’ is now 23 years old, and he means more to me than ever… I hope he doesn’t read this… I don’t want him to get a big head. Anyways, I remembered sighing as I do sometimes, and coming out of my trance.  Music… That would really top off a beautiful day like this!!

I had noticed a stack of CD’s in a little cubicle built into the dashboard of the car… lol  I told you it was getting dated!  Anyways, I reached over and probed the area above the CD’s and sure enough, I found the tiny slot where a disc could be inserted and a few controls to boot. One for the volume, and … well, maybe there was only one, now that I think about it! I think the bass was supposed to be controlled in another way, probably through the computer screen, but I never even tried. In my mind, it was enough that I was going to be able to play something and enjoy my memories with some nice music…. At least, that was the hope– You see, I had no idea what was on those CD’s…

I reached down from the player and flipped through the CD collection that amounted to about a dozen or so discs in those crazy clear plastic boxes that I can never open on the 1st attempt.  None of them had labels, so I shrugged and just grabbed one from the very middle of the stack, kind of chuckling at the randomness of it all and wondering what on earth I would shortly be listening to… I plugged it in.

There was a pause, and for a minute, I thought, “Oh great, I’m doing something wrong… There’s probably a trick to this, and I’ll figure it out, about the time I reach Middlebury!’  But, after 10 or 15 seconds, the sound of a concert crowd slowly filled the car, building to a crescendo as an artist greeted them and started to sing…Don’ t ask me who it was, because I don’t remember names well… The depth of someone’s eyes or the little way a lip curls when someone smiles or frowns… Yes. That I remember. Names? Not so much.

But, I can tell you that it was a contemporary, country- western type of artist who is well known and pleasant enough, and I enjoyed the music, more or less, as the Prius wound  it’s way through the tumbling country and the snow cover increased as I made my way further north…

Then, it happened… About 4 songs into the disc.  A song started to play that I hadn’t heard in over 30 years. Thirty years!  Wow.  Just writing that is a bit unnerving, to be honest.  Where does time go?

It was a song from the depths of my childhood… One that I heard for the 1st time when I was 16 years old, and trying to come to grips with the choices that I would soon be forced to make… Would I fulfill a promise I made, standing over the grave of a fallen soldier or push the memory and duty away like so many others, and pursue my selfish interests instead? Would I leave the most important person in my life in the hope that redemption rather than perdition awaited me? Would I ever return if I left in the first place?

The song started to play and my skin started to tingle. The hairs on the back of my neck stood up as my mind reeled and the memories flooded back…. And the melodic, haunting voice of Joni Mitchell opened the wounds that I thought were healed, long ago…

Yesterday a child came out to wonder
Caught a dragonfly inside a jar
Fearful when the sky was full of thunder
And tearful at the falling of a star

Then the child moved ten times round the seasons
Skated over ten clear frozen streams
Words like when you’re older must appease him
And promises of someday make his dreams

And the seasons they go round and round
And the painted ponies go up and down
We’re captive on the carousel of time
We can’t return we can only look
Behind from where we came
And go round and round and round
In the circle game *

The tears were falling as I wound my way down the backroads of Vermont and wondered why, of all the possible songs in the world, THAT song should play, from nowhere. One of the rarest of songs in which every word seems to describe me, as I struggled to understand my faith and the reasons for the things that happened in my life, from my lost innocence at age 10 to the present day where I face my own mortality and time has come full circle…

I have to say that it was a pivotal day in my life for many reasons. One of those days I will look back on someday, just to feel His arms around me once again… I know it sounds strange, but it is how I feel. For good or bad, that has been the way my life has been- full of moments of happiness matched by the deepest visions of despair… But, every step foward has taught and reminded me of one critical truth-  I am NOT alone, and never have been… Neither are you.

I love you all…. tman<3

link to full song— http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yR2vGJSX0xo&feature=related