Probably the coldness of that day was magnified by the wind in the cemetery. It was blowing with light snow flakes that were so intrusive to the family gathered around the newly dug grave. That blowing, chilling snowfall, uninvited but settling in the hole may have been a comforter for her. The old oak tree provided some shelter if you moved around it’s trunk avoiding the wind but how rude to hide behind a tree while everyone else was huddled together avoiding the moment and wanting to leave – head over to Rowdy Hall for warmth, a drink and burgers.
We had produced a play together, a festival in a field over in Montauk. We were a family then, joined together in music and theater to create Shakespeare in the park, not an original idea but what a great spot to do it.
“Lets put on a play”, Mickey had said to Judy, and they always did.
Ours was not a movie, but that labor of love that endures, and it’s ripples spread, carrying that love in directions still not charted. When they came dancing down the hillside, hands clasped, the sun setting, the geese flying south over the stage honking as if to accompany the orchestra, the blanketed people with their kids in tow looked up and saw the enchantment. People came across the wood-planked bridge and gathered around the stage we had built. We had set lights in the trees and the music played from behind a sheet hung as to tent them from sight. There were cabins on the hillside above the makeshift stage where the players changed costume and during the nights became friends for life.
He sat in the front row on the grass in a folding chair that Ed had carried for him. The two had wandered in to see what all the fuss was about over at the park. They stayed forever. He took out that camera, the one he always had near, and started shooting them, and he had them. What enticed him to become their sponsor must have been what he saw as purity, their Innocence in a world that had for him been a lifetime of something other. He wanted to be a part of it for the while when he was at the house overlooking the ocean, the house on the bluff where he gave all those fundraisers and allowed them it’s use as their shelter, the pool and the grounds. Avedon was their champion in a quiet sort of way, helpful to them, inspirational; he was, after all for them “above buildings in that single bound.”
Everybody came to the parties for H.S.F. His neighbors, Dick and Paul as well as Dawn and Ed. They were the hosts who did all the work. The evenings were a success around the fire-pit on the front lawn, the Atlantic down below against the bluffs, everybody in awe of the place and he was helping to give them a presence in the Hamptons scene: the Hamptons Shakespeare Festival had arrived. Dave and Josh created the perfect moment and it lasted several years but most of the players moved along with their lives. Some married each other – Dave and Amy a light that still shines over Montauk every July 4th from their parents’ gathered yard. Ed and Dawns’ kids all about. That’s what I think about out here ,every time I drive down Cooper’s Lane and pass the cemetery. How cold it was when we buried Judy. My Hamptons memories are of that beauty. Every one of our family is here and we will always come to her grave and remember together, forever.