My rambling thoughts.
The truth is, Terry Pratchett never knew me from Adam. Or Eve, for that matter.
The vast majority of readers will be in a similar position. And yet, we mourn over a man who we only knew not only off-handedly, but primarily only through the fiction he crafted and sold. And that’s because in all stories there is power, and Pratchett knew that. Not “power” like the ability to force someone to obey your whims or whathaveyou, which was never anything resembling true power in the first place. But…
Deep down, we are stories. A collection of apes, if even that, on a big clumsy rock, imbued with narrative. It formed our lives, heroes, villains, justice, morality. And now, those stories that made the being known as “Terry Pratchett” are… gone. Is there a divine heaven above, an endless cycle of life, some sort of writer’s Valhalla? Perhaps it doesn’t even matter.
Though we can try to keep him alive through his books, our memories, perhaps the thought of Pratchett is not what is worth keeping. His wit, perhaps, or moreso his charity, his sense of Right and Wrong. These things which made him not just a great man, which are so common throughout these ever-eternal chasms known as history, but a good one.
Which is to not do him a disservice by claiming him perfect, and I can think of few greater and more tempting disservices. He was not, of course. Terry was, in the end, just another person. And there are still so many more left, every individual counting. In fact, remember that truth, if nothing else.
“As soon as you saw people as things to be measured, they didn’t measure up.“
Remember that, and I can think of no greater tribute.*
*One last footnote…