Radiation Finished

With the daily visits to the Royal Marsden, we have cut back on socializing and attending theatre or museums. I was excited at one point in thinking that I had a final four sessions left, but Roisin pointed out my error (probably wishful thinking caused me to suppress and completely overlook a full week) and made it clear that there were nine to go. I did manage at least to get to a House of Lords session on the ‘Development of Development’ that, despite various positive spins by the speakers, underscored all the same the underlying implication of the inability to rectify disequality. 



The Focus

At the Other Palace, we caught a matinee performance of Kathleen Turner’s one-woman show titled “Finding My Voice.” She was utterly amazing as well as spot on politically. That evening we had dinner with Laura and Tom and their daughter Xena at The Gate. Richard and I splurged with negroni. A few days later at the Royal Overseas League, we enjoyed a lovely concert of Leonard Bernstein’s piano music – including his ‘Anniversaries’. The next night was the last gathering of The Free Speech Club. Michael Walker read his character of Odysseus from his play The Return of Odysseus with Mel as Calypso.

Otherwise there has been the Rodin exhibit at the British Museum and then the terrific and utterly entertaining nine plays of Noel Coward’s Dinner at Eight at the Jermyn Theatre. These were excellently acted. And it was an exhausting day, dinner and gin-and-tonic included, but we got through it.  For the rest, we had a dinner at the Beaufort House with Charlie and Suzette, attended the Beltane Pagan Federation ritual at Conway Hall, participated in the Pagan Pride procession from Russell Square Gardens, had a lovely meal and time at Darby and Stephen’s, went to Tacita Dean’s “Landscape” show at the newly expanded Royal Academy, and enjoyed a Mexican food tasting at Whole Foods that included some delicious margaritas. I finished my Cherry Hill Seminary class on ‘the World’s Religions from a Pagan Perspective’ – thoroughly enjoying my students, finished what I can so far for Darrelyn’s ‘Living Landscapes’, also an article for Patrick, and read Ben Aaronovitch’s Rivers of London that Steve Judd had given to me. I’m now reading and enjoying Ben Sessa’s The Psychedelic Renaissance. With Amy’s help, I submitted my pagan mysticism manuscript to the Material Religion Series of Bloomsbury Press, but it has already been rejected. We also enjoyed the Harry and Meghan wedding and Chelsea’s defeat of Manchester United.

With the treatment and also with the age we have become, we recollect and remember increasingly. This is perhaps less recollection in its primary sense since it amounts more to a presentation than as any product of concentrated concentration. But whatever it is and has been it has been very much appreciated. I find all these wondrous encounters within this tiny speck of the cosmos staggeringly fascinating. This life, this world is all that we really know that we have. Everything else is speculation or wishful thinking. So is not our duty to make the most of what we have? And anything less than all and not inclusive of everyone is not the most. But I find that as we recollect, we are provided with ecstatic reminisces and resonating quasi-re-experiences. Could we each possibly make our joys, bliss-states, jouissance into offering paeans into the extra-telluric cosmos? I wonder then if the adventure would continue, or is that in itself enough?

I suppose the ultimate question is: Is serenity a transcendental? The cosmos is the product of wish being made manifest, and any reflex of wish in us is ultimately for the cosmos. As bad as it currently seems – whether globally, nationally or from the White House, we are best not to look at history as progressive degradation but rather as contributions to the present and future expansion. Another part of the joy of the present is recollecting the many, many connections that have resulted in this life and being able to speculate on the possibility of various (past and new) connectings between them.  Much of our attention is in ‘drawing down’ as in ‘drawing down the moon’. This is to corporealize an intangible or transcendental. Yes, ethereal beauty is a lovely, but equally if not primus inter pares is terrestrial/physical beauty as well.

Supposedly I will feel as lousily discombobulated as I do already for the next three weeks from now and then another three weeks after that before getting back ‘more or less’ to the pre-treatment equilibrium. Who knows if the treatment has healed anything? But it’s nice, very nice at least, to have it over.


























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