I’ve always been of something of a dreamer, effortlessly slipping away from reality into a world of my own making.
When I was a kid my dad used to try to find out what was going on in my mind, which was pretty much a lost cause given all the strange activity going on in my noodle, but my father made the effort nonetheless.
“What are you thinking about?” he’d asked me every so often.
I usually just shrugged and looked away. I don’t remember the various scenarios my imagination was churning out back then—I can barely recall my thoughts from this morning.
However, on this Father’s Day, I find myself thinking about the time The Three Musketeers made my dad cry.
My father used to tell us about the books he read growing up and the Dumas classic was one of his favorites. And so when the Musketeers all left this world in The Man in the Iron Mask, it was too much for my father’s young self to bear.
“I read the ending of that book,” he said, “and I went into the bathroom and I cried.”
It was hard for me back then to imagine my father crying, as he could be something of a tough customer, but I’m grateful now that he shared that experience with me.
I’ve tried to picture him as a boy, locking himself away so no one in his family would see his tears. An iron mask probably would have come in handy.
I understand why he chose to hide because boys weren’t supposed to cry. They were supposed to be tough. And I certainly sympathize with his plight, as I am the uncrowned King of the Shameless Weepers.
I confess that I’ve yet to read The Man in the Iron Mask, but I am familiar with the climax of the silent film classic starring the legendary Douglas Fairbanks.
In the final scenes, D'Artagnan, portrayed by Fairbanks, is the only surviving member of the adventurous group.
All for One and One for All
He has been mortally wounded and as he looks into the sky with dying eyes he sees his companions, Porthos, Aramis, and Athos, who have preceded him in death, standing in the clouds, laughing and waving for him to join them.
“Come on,” Porthos says. “There is greater adventure beyond!”
The ending is beautiful in a way that only a silent movie can be. Directors obviously couldn’t use words back then, except in the title cards, so the images had to convey all of the emotions.
When D’Artagnan dies, he falls forward and as he tumbles out of the shot, the Three Musketeers reach down and pull him into the heavens.
People surround D’Artagnan’s body and begin sobbing, but the last thing we see are the reunited musketeers riding through the clouds in search of greater adventures.
It is an incredible piece of filmmaking and thank God I live alone because I’m crying even as I write this.
The scene is in even more poignant because it was Fairbanks’ farewell to the silent film. Talking pictures were taking over the movie business and Fairbanks retired from acting a few years later.
My father climbed into the clouds in 2007 and I like to think that he was greeted by my mother, my grandparents, and all others who were close to him.
This morning I had another fabulous energy session with my spiritual advisor, Kathryn Davis, and she encouraged me to shed all the old, negative energy that I’ve been carrying for so long and get in touch with my higher self.
I have bad memories of my father that I want to cast aside, since their constant repetition does nothing but weigh me down and tarnish the good days I had with my dad.
It’s so difficult because negative thinking has become second nature to me. Dark thoughts are so familiar that it’s a little scary to let them go, but I know I’ll be much happier if I can send them on their way.
So what am I thinking about? Well, I’m thinking about when my time comes to leave this world. And I hoping my dad will be there in the clouds ready to give me a hand.
Happy Father’s Day.