Anyway, like I said, the morning was cool and crisp and clear and the East River was roiled and blue. I walked along the river with Whiskey this morning and I thought, as I so often do, about mutability.
The grey granite lighthouse at the northern tip of Roosevelt Island (formerly Blackwell's Island, formerly Welfare Island) was lit again. In times like ours, I find this reassuring. The lighthouse was knocked out during hurricane Sandy and the city had more important things to do than to get it illuminated again. It took about a year for things to get back in working order.
But now it is back in working order and it's as if it were never out. I find that reassuring. Something like Mussolini declaring that he'll make the trains run on time.
Politicians, advertising agencies, wars, terrors, crazies with guns, come and go. Your job, my job is to be like a lighthouse.
Put roots down.
Shine a light.
And be there as often as you can.
Oh, and maybe, on a beautiful morning like today, or on a rainy morning, or on no morning in particular, read Shelley's "Ozymandias" now and again.
You could find worse ways to spend ten minutes.
I met a traveller from an antique land Who said: “Two vast and trunkless legs of stone Stand in the desert . . . Near them, on the sand, Half sunk, a shattered visage lies, whose frown, And wrinkled lip, and sneer of cold command, Tell that its sculptor well those passions read Which yet survive, stamped on these lifeless things, The hand that mocked them, and the heart that fed: And on the pedestal these words appear: ‘My name is Ozymandias, king of kings: Look on my works, ye Mighty, and despair!' Nothing beside remains. Round the decay Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare The lone and level sands stretch far away.”