Socorro is still on my mind

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It’s like the opener for that Parade Magazine column: “Whatever happened to Hunketty Bunketty in the show ‘Ding-a-Ling’ on TV? I always thought he was the craziest of the bunch …” So, whatever happened to the guy who scratched out the column, “Socorro on My Mind”? He seemed to one day kind of disappear from the map. All right, and disappear he did. He moved back to Albuquerque, from where he came. His house in Luis Lopez grew too many weeds for an old guy to handle. So the good times became memories. And Socorro was a phase in the fortuned life of a therapist gone mental. Good things always seem to come to an end — or, at least, the saying goes.

It’s like the opener for that Parade Magazine column: “Whatever happened to Hunketty Bunketty in the show ‘Ding-a-Ling’ on TV? I always thought he was the craziest of the bunch …” So, whatever happened to the guy who scratched out the column, “Socorro on My Mind”? He seemed to one day kind of disappear from the map. All right, and disappear he did. He moved back to Albuquerque, from where he came. His house in Luis Lopez grew too many weeds for an old guy to handle. So the good times became memories. And Socorro was a phase in the fortuned life of a therapist gone mental. Good things always seem to come to an end — or, at least, the saying goes.

The column “on his mind” fell to time’s marching on. Fifteen years is but a glitch, when measured by the stretch of things gone temporal. Its author had fun in penning its peppered lines. He walked the halls of the wiles that beguiled him. He treated himself to the pleasures of whistling in the air of ideas and dreams. Writers do work, it seems, but this one was wrested the happy holiday of relish and regale — a gift to enjoy, for the time it endured.

So thanks are what’s now apropos and sincere. Thanks to the editors, both present and past. Thanks to the readers, who were the environs and world where the words took hold. You were the mostly silent check on what the column contained. You were always in the wings, always the unspoken background that tested what was written. You were the cause and substance of statements throughout. It’s to you that hats must be tipped, now that thanks are in order and truth be told.

And Socorro which, on my mind, must linger forever. Socorro is the gem and the treasure I must now leave behind. Hardly a day in those years did Socorro lie silent. It spoke constantly of hushed wonder amid people of honor and beauty and trust. Drenched in valiant history, imbued with the glories of love and respect, weighted with life’s struggles, and alive in vast worlds too precious to be put into words, Socorro endures in the mind, in the lasting sea at the crest of the best.

Does this mean the end to the columns – that no more will come in the future, and the past is recast as time’s only tone? No, there could be more. Only time itself can tell that tale.

On my mind, indeed, Socorro, too rich to describe, too valued to plumb and entail. May you live on forever in the memory you inspire and the treasure you contain, as the silver thread of life’s breath that you are —and will always be.

Tom can be reached by email at tkozeny@centurylink.net.