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I was not convinced that I was required to grow any older for the moment than the lines on my face already suggested.  I was not convinced that the season's that govern a life in this kind of skin, with its peculiar elasticity and tendency to start to wear thin and lose its tension, meant that I was supposed to begin doing those things that other men my age start to do.  I was also still set on remaining unconvinced that whatever patterns I had grown into were so very well codified or set in stone (there are some who turn middle aged the moment they leave high school and start a life with someone important, there are some who play around, especially in the middle years, because they can't commit and are afraid of losing some tenuous connection to youth, and there are some who become more sexually experimental as they get older because they denied themselves certain things when they were younger, because of parents, or culture, or religion, etc.).  And I was not convinced that my wilder and rougher years were already behind me, and before me there were comforts, and things that I would start to feel drawn toward, favoring a quiet night in front of the television rather than a conversation with someone new in a cafe somewhere new.

I was aware that in my house, there were certain warrior paths that could lead a man well into his older years, and there were also obscure creative paths that were also fraught with the same possibility of a long life without much opportunity for calm comforts that so many hold dear.  I was also aware that there were certain expectations, here as anywhere, to marry again, to start another family somewhere again, or to find some kind of peace with a solitary life of work and ritual and occasional moments of soft bliss.  I was also aware that my favorite spirits were the ones who ruled over love, and ruled over the fire in the head and the heart that makes us make things, and after a certain number of years, entirely able to teach the next generation how to make things.  And I was very happy with my favorites.

There was also a strong and invisible pull from the forces that want us to be happy, to be settled, and to be sure.  I was convinced for a very long time that I could be sure, and the others would not be necessary.  Being happy and being settled were good things that happened to people I loved, but they were not meant for me, that they were paths that I was not built to travel.

So it was surprising to find myself thinking deep into nights that followed exhausting days, thinking about what it would take exactly for me to decide that this was the right moment and the right place to start settling down.  And I learned that I still felt that settling down meant settling, and I knew that I was not meant to settle.  I would have to make some kind of decision, a vow, where I would give myself over once again to the role of the eternally exiled, rootless and able to grow in any soil, but not for any period of time, or I could decide to be the magician that I was always becoming anyway, and that gave my gypsy soul a little bit of calm and a sturdy place form which to begin making something new out of myself again.

There is a house in my future, there's a woman there who lives with me, and there is a daughter who is becoming an adult who comes to stay, and there may be pets, and there may even be plants, but it's on a road that's connected to some other roads that I have to travel first.  In this house, everything may be as temporary as anything made from bones, but the people who live there will have feet that are married to the floor of the earth and the top of the mountain and the bottom of the sea, faithful entirely to all at once, and none in particular, and this is where I start to dream.

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