Immortal

(lin­er notes for track 7)

It’s been a year,
or two, or more it seems,
and you’re miss­ing them,
again…
those heroes in your life
who are now gone from your life…
miss­ing them, again,
espe­cial­ly one,
one who shined so bright­ly,
one who was so very close.

And tonight is dif­fer­ent
from all the oth­er aching nights:
though the tears are long gone,
the pain is unbear­able,
far beyond what you thought
it could ever be.

You rush out­side
into the black­ness of the win­ter night,
des­per­ate for a breath of fresh air.
And, final­ly, you look up.

“The stars!” your mind leaps.
“My gosh, the stars!  Look at all the stars!”
At that moment there is only you and the stars
and the cold
and the utter still­ness of the sil­hou­et­ted trees
as if they too can­not believe the sight.
“The stars!” you breathe…
there must be
thou­sands of them tonight,
thou­sands of dia­monds fill­ing the sky,
bril­liant, radi­ant,
shin­ing wher­ev­er you look,
shin­ing so bright­ly!

But,
isn’t it odd, you think,
and now that I think of it, how fun­ny, how strange!
All of our lives, since we were lit­tle,
when­ev­er we have gone out­side into the night,
if it was clear enough
we could always see the stars.
Always.
Now, years lat­er, there they are, still there!

The same stars,
bril­liant, radi­ant,
still shin­ing wher­ev­er we look,
shin­ing so bright­ly!

My breath is caught by this.

And sud­den­ly
there is not much dif­fer­ence
between the stars in the sky
and the heroes of my life.
Sud­den­ly there is not much dif­fer­ence at all.

Doubts creep in out of nowhere, so habit­u­al;
it is so easy to feel cold and alone again…

The stars, the stars, look at all the stars!

So I pick out a star from over­head, I choose a bright one as mine…
and I think of my hero in my aching heart.…
and I think very slow­ly

can I touch my star now?
no.

can I hear my star speak?
no.

but is my star still influ­enc­ing me
every day of my life,
still pro­found­ly affect­ing me
in my every wak­ing hour?
isn’t my star still giv­ing me
count­less thoughts and mem­o­ries and inspi­ra­tion,
still chal­leng­ing me to turn my ordi­nary life
into some­thing more tran­scen­dent?
aren’t the stars in the sky and the heroes in our minds
still tru­ly shin­ing for us,
bril­liant­ly, radi­ant­ly,
still shin­ing wher­ev­er we look, year after year,
shin­ing just as bright­ly as ever?

yes.

Immor­tal.
Immor­tal.

isn’t that tru­ly
how a star is?

Immor­tal.

(“Immor­tal” is addi­tion­al­ly ded­i­cat­ed to my moth­er and father, both of whom I painful­ly lost only months before the Colum­bia dis­as­ter.)

copy­right 2008 Anne Cabr­era

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