February 11, 2013

Goodbye, Gillis Mountain

Last night, a dear friend gave me a copy of Diane Keaton’s biography “Then Again”.  It was bookmarked to an end chapter and my friend asked if I would read those few pages aloud.

Those pages listed the small things that fade and sink into memory – children’s play, things found, songs sung. Imagine my surprise when I came to this:

“There was the last day we sang “Gillis Mountain” as we tooled along in my big black Defender. That was the day I cranked the volume high as it would go, so we could scream out the words ‘I took a trip up Gillis Mountain on a sunny summer day.’ Goodbye, Gillis Mountain. Goodbye. You’d think the accumulation of so many little goodbyes would have prepared me for the bigger ones, but they didn’t.”

Little goodbyes are not accumulative. They stand alone, each in their own still frame, neat and manageable.  But the big ones stand taller and are not easily tamed.

Goodbye, Gillis Mountain.  We’ll hear you in our dreams.

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