Day 335 - The Son
Three roles for angry others in my life:
To be a mirror to me
To work through issues with me
To catalyze me into seeing myself
I stand at the Olde Man's grave and wonder at the keen sense of sorrow that works its way within me. Aren't we supposed to grieve for those we loved? Yet, this is grief; I am certain of it. I feel as though part of me has been cut away as with a knife, leaving the stinging wound behind.
We didn't even have a name to give the old man. No one ever liked him well enough to ask. So when we buried him, we did the best we could, we gave him for eternity the name we knew him by. To be honest, if we'd dared, we'd have carved That Olde Fucker into the wood of the marker; that's mostly what we called him. But instead we called him what we called him to his mean and angry face, Olde Man.
He was a part of us, I suppose. More part than we knew, always giving the lie to our pretensions, calling down the truth on our heads when we lied in public. He was our Devil's Advocate, the Angry Man to our town Council, the one who kept us most honest, but we never even knew his name.
Tomorrow night, when next we meet, I'll take his place. He taught me well, skewering me in particular upon his withering gaze. His sharp and angry words made me hurt then, and respond with more truth than I knew I had in me.
If I'm lucky, no, if we're lucky, I'll be able to do what he did for us all. If I'm very lucky indeed, they'll forget my name when my people bury me in turn, and call me That Olde Fucker's Son.
It will be an honor.