These days as I drive west through the darkness along the coast of Connecticut on I95 the constellation of Orion is splashed across the southern sky, just above the horizon.  Despite the distance of those myriad stars, it is still almost too bright for me to look at.  That, and then there’s the threat of driving off the road if I stare out the driver-side window for too long.

I know that it is not him, not in any real way, but I cannot help feeling the whisper of his presence when I see those stars.

I listen for Silas above the thumping drums and screeching guitars I have blasting in the car on my way home.  I listen to see if he’s speaking to me, but mostly I just hear the din of my voices arguing and rehearsing the narrative of my soul. Agreement between them all is rare.  Mostly what I do is made of momentum and habit.

Sometimes NPR intersects with my ruminations like tonight when Terry Gross spoke to T Bone Burnett and she played a clip of the song “O Death” from the movie “Oh Brother Where Art Thou?”.

There I was driving along thinking of what Death has taken from me, reflected in those stars above.  Thinking of how well I know It now and how deep and terrifying It lies nearby, like the darkness flashing past wooden and forested.  And then that song out of no where like a deer or a moth or a shooting star.

The stars, the song, the speed of my lonely car and me telling me what I think about it all.

I rarely even see the what-if-World anymore.  There is no empty, ghostly carseat behind me.  There is no other schedule all tangled with child-care and life.  There is only what is:  around me, above me, within me, without.

Those stars are not him but their slight, whispery light and impossible, infinite dust, they are so close to me as I drive;  closer than Death.  Closer than his life.

They are brilliant, and they shine on me all the way home to Lu.