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By the time you read this, I will be part of  the Phoenix Annual AIDS walk. On top of my head there will be some  green sponge-rubber moose antlers. They were purchased last year from a young man who was raising money for AIDS, in memory of his Uncle Jack, who died some  years ago. I will think of this boy and his Uncle Jack. I will also think of the many people I have known – professionally and personally, who have died of AIDS.

This year, my thoughts are expansive. I am thinking of all the people I have ever known who have died or disappeared.  As I age, there are more for each category. If I live long enough, just about everyone I know will either die or leave me.

As I walk, I will think about the people I once knew, presumably alive but gone from my life. This list is legion: school friends at every level, old neighbors, colleagues, etc.  I will recall the many men I have loved. I will also reflect on the bloggers I used to know, who write no more. They are gone, as if they never were.  These outnumber the present bloggers.

As I walk, I will imagine my soul approaching that region where dwell the vast hosts of the dead and departed.  I will hear the voices of the runners and the passers by, but my soul will hear other voices, falling upon all the living and the departed.

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