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legacy

From that haiku of literacy

The past is dead and since we must speak well of the dead, we are mute? My family isn’t big in legacy that anyone has told me about. We have no traditional trade, crafts, stories. No narrative collective history. No particular land. We used to have gatherings for music but those dispersed and the notes have been lost. The next generations were never taught how to join in. It was deadheaded and the seeds never collected or spread.

Any legacy I leave may be exclusively potential, not genes. But then who would want the genes of flat feet, irregular teeth, wide haunches on men and women, short stature, blindingly white skin, skin cancer on every twig of the tree, hand tremours, some odd preoccupying fear of water common to both sides of the family, or the social habit inheritance of family being people you love but that doesn’t presuppose you have to like each other? Eugenics is looking good but there are 100s of us. Luckily most have the sense to have good taste in spouses to disperse and weaken the genes by diversity.

That seems harsh and one-sided. I suppose it is.

Better to have a legacy of potential, makers of concepts picked out from the wider world, generations going from farmer to gardener to separator of figurative wheat from chaff? I hope at least literacy will continue, although on one side of my family, I am only the third generation to not sign my name with an X.

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