Monday, May 25, 2009

Dennis Birg Little - 05/25/42 - 03/05/89

Happy birthday to my close and dear friend. I used to be a letter writer and he was too. We loved to get letters; we loved to write letters. We didn't write novels and poems because we were writing letters though we'd both have thought it wonderful to be a novelist or a poet. If we weren't together, and were doing something worth writing about, we were mentally composing our next letter to one another.

And it is amazing to think of what he didn't encounter because his time was cut short by lung cancer: e-mail; YouTube; Facebook; 9/11; Nirvana; Keith Olbermann; cellphones; digital-this, digital-that; the embarrassment of having an idiot for a President; and the thrill of having an intelligent graceful man replace the idiot ... on and on and on.

And I wonder ... if he were still alive would we be writing letters or would even we have succumbed to emailing, or to encounters on Facebook?

I miss you everyday, my friend. Happy birthday!

Tears want to fall but I squeeze my eyes against them. It must be the tons of yellow pine pollen in the air. I'll drive to Orleans, sit in a cafe, and read, but I'll be thinking of a letter I could write to Dennis and wishing he was back there in Lansing to receive it.

There's been no one that's come close to taking his place.

Pathos rules the day that is his birthday!

I took this picture of blue-eyed curly-haired him when we were in Paris in 1966.


  1. My brother died in 1991, and like you I imagine how he'd have enjoyed all the wonders of the 21st century. When I died I thought he was so old (he was 11 years older than I am), at 36. When I passed that age it felt strange, and somehow wrong.

    Your post about your friend is so touching. Be very glad you knew him as long as you did.

  2. Whoops. I meant, "When HE died I thought ..."