“I saw my earlier selves as different people, acquaintances I had outgrown. I wondered how I could ever have been some of them.”
— Roger Zelazny
There was a boy who felt cut off from the other kids around him. That was ok. He found solace in books and comics. He had an amazing dream life with a continuing cast of characters including a winged lion and a talking cigarette ash. At nine years old he lied about his age and got a paper route. He could be seen trundling down the street with a red wagon filled with papers and his little miniature schnauzer at his side.
There was a teenager at odds with his parents, both sets of them in different states. He wrote depressing poetry abut alienation and lost love. Inspired by Jack Kerouac and Baba Ram Dass he left home with his best friend and hitch hiked and rode busses across the country to California where he joined a religious cult. For the first time in his life he started to believe in something even tho less than a year later, he realized it for the lie it was. Still he had had an experience he couldn’t forget where for a moment he felt connected to everyone and everything in the universe.
There was a young man in his twenties. He had started trying to reconnect with his parents by coming out to them after returning from a hitchhiking trip across country. He moved in with his lover in Boston only to discover that his friend was an alcoholic and ended the relationship after sending him to a place where he would ‘get help’. He was having trouble believing in much of anything yet still kept on with his tarot card readings both for himself and for friends.
I was all three of these and many others. I had different beliefs and different friends and different habits throughout. I can’t relate to some of them anymore yet when I look into the mirror of times past I see and know them all. I might have outgrown them yet I feel a great deal of affection for them. Without them I never would have come into being.
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