Napoleon's 1812 Russian campaign, Charles Minard.

Finishing knife and fork surgery on a Full Irish breakfast, Seamus swabs his plate with crusty brown bread and drains his mug. The year has just turned and he’s far-eyed, drifting over the riverine course of life, plotting his position in the slipstream.

Tape hiss, static, fast-forward and rewind, video scrubbing over Technicolor memories. Scars throb and joints ache as the tape replays injurious adventures; blood quickens at the sight of forgotten bodies; tears well like timelost raindrops over boneyards into which he pall-bear’d the long lost and longed for.

Laying down the knife, standing balanced on its edge, looking to either side of the fine line it cuts between expectation and reality, he says only:

“Middle age isn’t my Waterloo, it’s my retreat from Moscow in the killing winter.”

This entry is part of my journal, published January 2, 2014, in New York.