Isn’t it funny how something so simple can lift you so high? I woke up with worrisome thoughts in my head. It took a while to shake it off. Then I went outside and was treated to the miracle of sunrise. I have seen so many beautiful sunrises and sunsets, but sometimes they really get me. It’s like this morning’s arrival of the sun grabbed me by the lapels and shouted, “Hey, it’s a new day – appreciate me!” And I do. Here is a shot of the sun cresting the horizon and turning the skies to pinks and crimson. Wherever you are and whatever you’re at I wish you blessings.
Some days are heavy. It is what it is. My brother is very much on my mind today, as are his children and his granddaughter. Some news just opens up wounds and we feel the hurt anew. It’s been nearly three years since he died tragically in an event that was wholly preventable. Three years. It’s hard to believe – it doesn’t seem that long ago. We go on with our lives – what else can we do? As most of you know he was killed by an impaired driver as he was driving home from work. I am searching for peace as I write this and trying to let the heaviness go. Life sometimes seems so hard. I just found out that the man who killed him has been granted day parole – he has not served even a year of his four-year sentence. I am trying to process this information. I am trying to fully forgive. One step at a time, I guess, and one day at a time. And in the end, it really doesn’t matter whether he serves one day or several years – nothing will bring Chris back to us. So, what to do? There really is nothing to be done is there? Chris was a generous, kind, and loving individual with a terrific sense of humour. Hopefully I will find a way to channel these personality traits and live life as fully as I can, both for myself and to honor my younger brother who was the epitome of selflessness.
Funny how a song can take you back to your youth. My best friend through my teens died many years ago. She was diagnosed with juvenile diabetes when we were fourteen years old. She died when we were thirty-eight. She was fierce. She was funny and she was a wonderful friend. She managed her diabetes better than most. It took her a fair amount of time to come to terms with it though. I remember her sneaking French fries from my plate. I remember her begging for a bite of my chocolate bar and other goodies that she was not supposed to have. Her mother was very strict about what she ate. Understandably. But when you’re a teenager the idea of dying seems impossible, so I would indulge her, even while I scolded. Perhaps if I had known more I would not have eaten such junk in her company. But I was equally in denial. It would take many years before I became aware of the toll the disease would take on her body. By then it was too late.
I was her maid of honour at her wedding. The marriage lasted less than three years. They never had children. I remember her visits – she eventually moved to British Columbia, while I went in the opposite direction, back to Newfoundland where I’d been born. She visited us there once and we took her around to see the sights. I guess the Long Range Mountains were not nearly as spectacular as the Rockies, and I was disappointed she was not as enthralled with them as I was. Yet we did spend many pleasant days on beaches and on forest trails. I would not see her again. A year or so later her mother called to tell me of her passing. I wish she would not have told me of the circumstances – she had died alone in her small apartment and it would be a few days later before a neighbour found her body. I think that is the worst memory and the despair I felt (and often still feel) knowing she was alone.
Still, I treasure all the memories and the friendship we shared that helped us through the minefield of adolescence and the rigors of our young adulthood. Her brother told me about spreading her ashes on the waves of the Pacific. One day soon I hope to make the trip to view the splendid redwoods and listen to the waves lapping the shores of British Columbia and say a final good-bye to this friend of my youth.
Some very insightful thoughts on life today, not just in the U.S.A. but in the world at large. Check it out.
(This poet’s web book on homelessness, released four years ago on our own WordPress platform, has been brilliantly reviewed by both Rebelle Society and Namaste Publications, and is presently creating compassion in 36 world nations.
Written during her own period of homelessness, its chapters are being republished here, one each day for 100 days.)
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I was just out on the balcony watching children rolling down the incline that is part of the green space behind our apartment building. I love watching children play – they remind me of all the simple joys I experienced myself as a child growing up in rural Newfoundland. We had so much fun! Life really is all about the simple pleasures, isn’t it? And how unfortunate it is when we allow the days to become a grind. Admittedly, it is damned difficult to notice all the small blessings when you are in the midst of a proverbial storm. But today was a good day (and really, most of them are – trials and tribulations not withstanding). I woke up around 5 a.m. the sky was dark and there was just a faint line of red on the horizon. It was nice to greet the dawn and wonder what the day might bring. As most of you know, I work in the local library and you never know who will walk through the doors, or what pleasant surprises you may encounter. Children feature in many of mine – they are just so honest and often very, very funny. At any rate I just wanted to share my thoughts and this photo I grabbed of the lightening skies as a new day dawned. Wherever you are and whatever you may be experiencing, I hope you recognize the small blessings and the simple joys.
Beautiful weaver of words
Spin your fine tales once again
Bring us hope and light
In these dark days of sorrow
Of confusion and warfare
We need you now
Speak your words of hope into our hearts
Fan the dying spark
Let it leap into raging fire
To consume us now
With your passion
And loving heart
With your insight
You know our hearts
And the secrets we keep within our beings
Blow up our wisps of desire
For a better world
For nations on their knees in worship
Yet do not know you
Knit us together once again
Heal our hurts
And help us know you once again
That you alone hold
Let us in on the secret
I’ve been reading stories about climate change and following Greta Thunberg’s progress as she addresses the powers that be concerning the climate crisis. I don’t think it helps to throw young people under the bus for voicing their concerns (and ours as well). I read a very acrimonious response to this young woman’s impassioned plea that was filled with adjectives that shamed and blamed young people calling them “entitled” among other things.
We’ve all heard the barrage of messages on both sides. On one hand baby boomers and their parents are blamed for the present sorry situation we find ourselves in: tsunamis, hurricanes, tornadoes, wildfires, and other weather bombs that have left cities and often whole nations in ruins. On the other hand, people are quick to point out the dependence on cell phones and high-tech toys that are updated frequently, which also has an impact on climate change. It’s all very disheartening. And none of it productive.
Attacking one another achieves nothing but a simmering resentment and blinds us all to the matter at hand. We cannot make a difference as long as our energies are focused on the blame game instead of holding big business and governments accountable and taking personal responsibility for our own actions that contribute to the problems – like buying things we do not need and sending stuff to landfill instead of recycling or re purposing items. In Canada we are in the midst of trying to make a decision on who to vote for in the upcoming federal election – climate change is high on the agenda. Thousands are gathering in every major city across the country to participate in the global climate strike even as I write. We cannot afford to continue burying our heads in the sand. I just pray for divine guidance when it comes to this global crisis that affects all life on earth, and also for wisdom and insight as we mark our ballots