Oscar season, this week I saw “Boy and The Heron,” a Best Animated Feature nominee. Instantly, this rich, episodic, allegorical film makes clear it takes place in Japan during World War II—so like many other viewers, I’d instantly anticipated Hiroshima and Nagasaki. (Spoiler alert: Hayao Miyazaki, the film’s director, goes in very different direction!) But we, seated in a darkened movie theater, don’t know that yet, do we. So we wait, already sensitized, already alert, already prepared to mourn.  Every scene—and there are a lot of them—become that much more rich, more precious. It’s an experience not unlike reading The Diary of Anne Frank, isn’t it? We know the horrific fate of the gifted young writer we’re reading and so appreciate her every word, her every sentence that much more fully, don’t we.

Also this week: I discovered I have a sinus infection, am now on antibiotics, and feel almost like me, again. Looking back, I realize many of the low-grade yet affecting symptoms I’d had for almost two weeks—fatigue, mild depression, sensitivity to cold/chills—I’d assumed were because I’m getting old! (My sense of smell had also been affected, it seems, although that loss never registered.)

Hiroshima and Nagasaki did happen, didn’t they.  Old age happens, too. Poignantly aware that, looming, changes will happen to my body that amoxicillin won’t cure, may I fully appreciate this extraordinary, present, rich gift of Life. All of it.




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  1. Yes, but life is often hard to understand, as is that boy and that heron. Still, it is indeed rich.

  2. You provide a window to your thoughts in these posts, and they are always worth perusal. “Old age happens.” People are complicated. Important observations that need revealing, repeatedly, among others. I may live far away, but in this instance feel as if I’m at FMC, enjoying your company. Thank you.

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