“Everybody tries to protect this vulnerable two three four five six seven eight year old inside, and to acquire skills and aptitudes for dealing with the situations that threaten to overwhelm it. So everybody develops a whole armour of secondary self, the artificially constructed being that deals with the outer world, and the crush of circumstances…. And in fact, that child is the only real thing in them. It’s their humanity, their real individuality, the one that can’t understand why it was born and that knows it will have to die, in no matter how crowded a place, quite on its own. That’s the carrier of all the living qualities. It’s the centre of all the possible magic and revelation….
“And the only thing people regret is that they didn’t live boldly enough.”
[A short excerpt of a letter written in 1986 by Ted Hughes to his beautiful son, Nicholas, who, in 2009, suffering from depression, took his own life. Nicholas was 47 when he died. Don’t waste a minute. Be bold. Be real. Be difficult. Be hard to handle. Use it all up.]