I also often think of you,
a dear friend for more than half a century.
Fifty years! Longevity is indeed a mark of deep friendship.
You may have an acquaintance you see on and off over time.
Dear friends share deeper roots.
Mere passage of decades — seeing or hearing from each other on and off — is not enough.
It doesn’t earn the greeting “dear friend.”
There’s a specificity to deep friendship, many nodal points of contact worthy of singular celebration:
As I have told you more than once, I still have the old Collier paperback edition of
The Inward Morning that you gave me way back in June ’69.
You inscribed it: “To xxx, for a good spring of writing and wonder.”
And my friend then adds:
Whenever I ask myself if such a season of awakening ever really occurred,
this precious old artifact
floods my memory with all the assurance
Those were formative years,
for which I owe you countless thanks.
I owe my friend . . .