Man To Man For Neil Sutton
Twenty years of friendship forms the central circle of a Venn diagram in which the outer rings are labelled “familiar” and “forgiven,” or “observed” and “overlooked.” It marks the pinnacle in which we are gently but firmly fastened together, the way a woggle hugs two extreme ends of a Boy or Girl Scout scarf. The decades have done their best to wear holes in us like the jeans we put through the wash too many times, to erode what has sedimented instead. Now we can even accommodate silence; we invite it to sit at the table between us, where it raises a little toast that, if said aloud, we’d politely pretend not to hear. And the pleasure, the privilege of our inertia is such that we don’t look another twenty years ahead, but content ourselves to let the conversation continue like coffee set swirling with the strongest of stirs.
Shane Schick has been a columnist for the Globe and Mail, the Editor in Chief of Marketing Magazine and an Editor-at-Large at Swagger Magazine. Shane is developing a publication about customer experience design called 360Magazine.com. He lives in Toronto with his wife and three children.
How writing has affected Shane's wellbeing: Poetry has always allowed people to say things that might otherwise go unsaid, and for me I think it's offered a specific way to practice gratitude. My poem 'Man To Man,' for example, is about the unique (and sometimes difficult to publicly express!) value of male friendship. We need to celebrate anything in our lives that contributes to our sense of belonging and wholeness, and poetry captures that as well as any painting, sculpture, script or song.