Anyway, the night was noteworthy for a few reasons. First, a group of us who were friends three decades ago met up and reminisced, as one does at a reunion. Pictures of ourselves, faded with age (the pictures, not the people) were presented, shocked expressions were uttered, and a merry time was had by all.
Second, I lamented the few people who were not present. Some were not present because we had lost touch with them (one of them was a dear friend, Glenn Vogel, whom I have tried and tried to reconnect with but who seems to have no social media presence at all) and some, regrettably, were not present because they had died.
Lastly, one of our fellow graduates had managed to procure the final issue of the school newspaper and encouraged us to take the articles that meant something. I found I had three submissions in the paper under my name, not counting the Senior Wills (the idea was we would "bequeath" items and ideas to other people).
My own will ended by giving my heart to my girlfriend of the time. I know what you're thinking. Ah, the folly of youth, to think that high school romances can last. An eighteen year old swain proclaiming his undying love for a girl he would subsequently break off with and probably never see again. How naïve I was, to think that the person we fell in love with so many years ago would remain in my heart, and I in hers. Love is meant to be lost, over and over, you are saying.
Well, Dear Reader, sometimes the Universe smiles on us. That woman whom I proclaimed my undying and perpetual love to back in 1986 woke up next to me, as she has done for the past twenty-five years. And yes, she gave me herself in her newspaper proclamation, too.
And our love remains as strong as ever. I think Balzac said something apropos about love:
True love is eternal, infinite, and always like itself. It is equal and pure, without violent demonstrations: it is seen with white hairs and is always young in the heart.
So, anyway, all you cynics; all you realists; all you world-weary smirkers; all you clear-eyed pragmatists who just know that nothing is eternal, that everyone loses, that life is pain and suffering, that we all fight against lonliness and the encroaching darkness of oblivion and are destined to lose; all you who laugh into your sleeves at the very idea of "forever love" and scoff at the expression "amor vincit omnia;" and all you "old souls" who think that only fools believe in true love...
It's really hard to see your smug faces over the brilliance my true love's smile.
It's hard to hear you over the sound of my wife saying, "I love you, Sean."
Be seeing you!