Goodbye, 2009

The real index of civilisation is when people are kinder than they need to be.

Louis de Berniere, novelist.

Saying goodbye to the old year seems an apt time to ponder this quote (from Word a Day). I’ve foregone opportunities this week, this day, to be kinder than necessary (to others, to the earth, to myself); I’d like to take up more of them in the coming year and if you do, too, well, how civilised we might become.

My family said goodbye yesterday to perhaps its most civilised member, Uncle Frank Davie, with tears, and coral-coloured roses laid on coffin and violin. We remembered his gentleness, wit, compassion, mischief, vegetarianism, intelligence, laughter, and those piercing blue eyes which told you he knew something of the law of the stars. Here is a tribute from one who loved him well.

Frank was kinder than he needed to be. It’s a fine thing to have his footsteps up ahead.

3 responses to “Goodbye, 2009”

  1. Hi Pen

    What a reassuring thought – that of you walking with a sense of your Uncle Frank’s footsteps up ahead.

    Although I never met him, I can’t help thinking how like him you must be. Especially your line about his eyes… yours, too, let us know you understand something of the lore of stars.

  2. A loving, beautiful tribute to a much-loved uncle. And the sentiments expressed for the year ahead, make much sense. It’s really all quite simple when you boil it down, isn’t it?