The day I almost killed myself was the day my life began anew. This was not as beautiful as it sounds -- although the day itself was beautiful, punishingly so, the sky an aching, acetylene flame blue. The mountains outside my car wimndows rose in a deep summer green from the riverside, and the grassy highway margins were salted with small, white wildflowers. new York's Hudson Valley was staging, as naturalist John Muir would say, the grand show. I was in the blackest of moods, speeding along the river roadway to meet my friend Lori for lunch at a local Mexican place. By now I was about six months into an outpatient mental health treatment program at Poughkeepsie's Saint Francis Hospital, feeling pretty ripped apart by, well, feeling. I spent every day bobbing in the dark current of depression, too tired to swim, and afraid of going under. Everything seemed impossible. Just walking to the end of the driveway to ge the mail required effort. I was miserable and miserable to be around, dragging through the days like Job with a migraine.