What We Have

“Being with him when he died was something I will never forget. His bravery. His happiness. His acceptance. It was a colossal experience for me. Changed my life completely in a way that I had not expected. I expected to feel sad and lost. But I felt the opposite. Just, like, ‘Boy, this is it. This is all we have. Right here. So you’d better pay attention.’”

Laurie Anderson and Lou Reed

This certainly set off a firestorm of controversy. Not the photo but the words by Anderson. Predictable things: How can she say that?! Of course there’s more than now…Heavenly, etc., Still miss my wife and I loved her for many more years than…Who is she kidding? No grief and loss? Angry rhetoric that somehow people thought was appropriate rather than trying to understand. I find those sorts of things amazing. It’s never a matter of seeking what she came to experience, but rather a diatribe about a belief system—one’s own. Oi!

Of course there were also many who believed they understood what she had to say, with or without a Heaven to come. All of a measure of one’s own life, and death.

So, she wrote of how they came to be, how their minds entangled and how they could imagine no others than each other.

How when it came time for him to die to this earth he was in ecstatic conversation with The Other, communicating in Tai Chi symbols, his hands dashing madly about in front of him, a Light that grew and emanated, and a smiling countenance that made his face seem on fire.

This gave me chills of light, of joy. A death to Celebrate, as some are.

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