I won't tell you his name, but I'll tell you that he is the keeper of memories, the soul of kindness, a beatnik, a jazz buff, a man who's been to war. He remembers where he was when Kerouac died and where I was when he called me to tell me about it. He remembers visiting my widowed father and riding the subway home to keep him company. He remembers what it was like to be crazy just for fun and he knows that the times got sober and so he got saner with them.
We had dinner in Miami Beach tonight, some little jazz club on Lincoln. He's taking care of his sweetheart, wondering about his friends. He lives in a tiny flat in an old building on the beach. He asks about my daughter, my dog, my woods, my worries. He's totally there and he says that he thought he'd never see me again and damn, ain't it great? And he says it, not so's I'll agree with him, but so he can be sure that I'll feel it myself.
Tomorrow is Thanksgiving. I'll be giving thanks. Hey, it would be crazy not to.