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Book details
  • SubGenre:Death, Grief, Bereavement
  • Language:English
  • Pages:100
  • eBook ISBN:9781620951163

From Particles and Disputations: Writings for Jeff

A Book of Hours

by Philip D. Luing View author's profile page

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When my partner Jeffrey died of AIDS in 1994, one of my greatest comforts was to sort through and organize a drawer full of mere lines drawn on frail paper - birthday cards, holiday greetings, anniversary remembrances, various notes I’d written, a few he’d written me. I’m hoping this collection of the writings I did for and about Jeff will now communicate to a more public audience, mostly by inference, the story of our lives together. I hope they will convey how we grew as a couple, and how through our joys and our struggles we realized an abiding spirit of strength and peace in our relationship. I truly hope my readers will each see something worthy of and possible for their own relationships in ours.
"From Particles and Disputations" is a collection of playful, romantic, candid and personal creative writings that I wrote for my partner Jeff. From our meeting in 1982 until his death from AIDS in 1994 I marked each birthday, anniversary, holiday, and other special or difficult occasion we shared with a candid piece of writing – sometimes poetry, sometimes prose, sometimes celebratory, sometimes anguished – chronicling and reflecting upon the event. These were intimate writings composed solely for the purpose of expressing myself to one other person. Following Jeff's death I collected these writings into a “book of hours” which I entitled "From Particles and Disputations: Writings for Jeff." Read together they impart our story, a love story with a sad but transcendent ending. Read in a larger context, I believe these writings have something important to add to a much needed conversation in our society about what constitutes morality. I believe we live moral lives by establishing, protecting, and enriching the trustworthiness of our relationships with ourselves, our sense of deity, and the world in which we live. For most of us, the first and foremost ripple of our morality finds its expression is in our relationship with a mate. The trust we give to another individual to share and protect our person and our property, those most basic aspects of our being, is what renders these relationships sacred.
About the author
Phil Luing began creative writing by composing short stories during the grammar school years of his childhood, which was spent in rural, northern Minnesota. He was the editor of both his high school yearbook and student newspaper. He attended Cornell College in Mt. Vernon, Iowa, where he earned a B.A. with a double major in Philosophy and Theater. While in college he served as the news editor and editor-in-chief of the student newspaper. In college he discovered a talent for drawing and, at the invitation of the Art faculty, presented a senior thesis show. He has remained active as a visual artist ever since, concentrating on expressionistic abstract and figurative drawing. He maintains a website for his art at After college he moved to Chicago, Illinois and joined the NewTown Writers, a writing group. He was an active member of the group for over twenty years and served as an editor or contributor for ten volumes of their bi-annual journal, Off The Rocks. His cantata for synchronized speaking voices, “Elements of Love”, was produced by NewTown Writers in 1992 and was named one of the best theater events of the year by a critic for the Chicago Tribune newspaper. In June, 2000 he earned a Master’s degree in Interdisciplinary Arts from Columbia College of Chicago. For his thesis, he produced a volume of his writings entitled from Particles and Disputations as well as an exhibition of his drawings, a video, and a live performance. For over twenty years he has worked in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at Northwestern University’s Feinberg School of Medicine, where he currently serves as a Research Administrator. At home he collaborates with his domestic partner, singer/songwriter Charles Stephen Hughes, on writing lyrics and maintaining their home.
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