The Phoenix Founder has seen several people mourning, or go through grief recently. Since he had such a particular memory, perhaps the reason so many readers say of his books they ‘feel they are actually there‘ maybe there is some advice to those in grief – ‘be gentle on your own memories’. In the present place you are, with all you are experiencing in the now, you are in part the creator of those memories, reinterpreted through the prism of time and emotion. When death steps into the frame though he thinks some kind of ‘psyhic’ doorway opens, most especially to memory and the past, of course. Nowadays we do not know how to grieve properly, in the fast and furious world, and since those who have not experienced it simply cannot know, they often find themselves invading a psyche that has become hyper sensitive and often wounded. Which does not mean those grieving always need to be alone, they need the right kind of company. Once people went into mourning, wore a black tie, dress or a black armband, and it perhaps alerted others that they were in a different place entirely, perhaps trying to reconnect with life. It is also why we used to cover mirrors, because it can also involve real ‘hauntings’ of memory, that throws shadows and judgements back at the self. CS Lewis said that grief is fear, fear for the hard nature of death, for the future, for the meaning of it all. How deeply we need less fear in the world, and more of the right connectedness.

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