|The End of a Long Day, 1982, by Kevin MacDonald|
On the anniversary of Kevin's death a year ago I posted a request for memories on Facebook. (I'm writing this almost exactly a year later. You know I'm busy....) Though I have sometimes compared Facebook friends to "real life" friends this was the most powerful sharing I received, and she is a "before" acquaintance, not an "after" friend.
Which just goes to show you... what? That sometimes when you think people have failed you some gigantic triumph shows up right when you need it. Five years later.
And you should be as patient with yourself as you are with the world, and more with both.
At least, that's what I take away from this slow, late lesson in generosity and love.
I see I just missed remembering Kevin by a minute. It's 12:01 a.m. It's funny, but I was just thinking about Kevin - and you - this morning, while driving my car home from grocery shopping. Before I knew this was the anniversary of his death. I was thinking about Kevin's passing and that I never contacted you. I'm sorry. Although I was (and am) out of touch with everyone -- Phyllis and Paula and Linda -- I did get an email and was so sorry to hear that you had lost your husband and your love, that you were now raising Irene without Kevin. How hard that would be. Sorry it's taken so long to give you my condolences.
I didn't know Kevin very well. But he was so comfortable, so I always felt very comfortable with him. He was easy to talk to and he was so lovely. When you two got together, I felt like a jewel was shown off to great advantage in a gorgeous platinum setting. I think you really added to his allure. I also felt, in his connection to Alex and a few other artists, something very masculine. That's probably a weird observation, but I love Alex and I sensed their shared history and appreciated the reminder of the DC art community in its earlier, wilder days. They felt a little like frontiersmen with mud on their boots.
I love Kevin's work. I feel like he must be Buddhist to achieve what he achieved in his pictures. I adored his architectural subject matter and the paintings of houses. I feel, when I look at Kevin's work, that he listened his art into being instead of drawing or painting it. Pictures full of listening. When a review came out in the early 2000's, I showed it to Tom and said it would be wonderful to have one of Kevin MacDonald's prints in our house.
I also remember running into you at Whole Foods when you told me that Kevin had cancer. I gave you a ride home, and I was just bowled over by your optimism and your taking it one day at a time, savoring what you had. I think Kevin was really lucky to have you, Robin. You hold his memory so constantly and your love for him so beautifully.
Do you know how much more it means to me that this came when it did... rather than right away? I would have lost it, not heard it... at 6 years... what a kind gift.
What a bonus too that it's about ME and not HIM, really. That is a memory worth holding on to.