So who out there has untrimmed the tree and put all the decorations away? I still haven't started -- I need all the Christmas lights I can get on these dark days and have sworn not to put one thing away until the end of January (as recommended, even in non - inaugural years, by Stephen Fry)!
This month has just been too dark in every way -- weather, politics, all the griefs of the world. Martin Luther King, Jr. is dead; the arc of history does not tend toward justice; Jesus is never coming back; there will never be peace on earth. While we, personally, may not be skewered, greed takes the day, and our happiness is forever tainted by the dark undertoad of the haves vs the have nots and the few hurting the many.
If this isn't the bleak midwinter, then I don't know what is!
I still see so much normalizing going on, even among staunch Trump Objectors. How do they do it? I'm pretty sure that disgust has been written all over my face during some uncomfortable conversations where I was trying my best to maintain a "no comment" stance. But the dismay just leaks out. Disgust, dismay, despair, hate, sadness -- all the aforementioned emotions combined. Thus, Let the Record Show. All the cynical cartoons speak to my heart. I know it seems wrong to hate, but even worse is the sadness. Every day feels like somebody's funeral. A dreadful week.
Too many things that used to be funny just seem sad now, but thanks to comedian Lily Tomlin, I haven't completely lost my sense of humor. I had to laugh when I heard her parting words to President Obama: "Too bad aliens didn't come during your Presidency. We would have been so proud to take them to our leader!"
But then I almost cried.
for offering this antidote to despair:
A Brief For The Defense
Sorrow everywhere. Slaughter everywhere. If babies
are not starving someplace, they are starving
somewhere else. With flies in their nostrils.
But we enjoy our lives because that’s what God wants.
Otherwise the mornings before summer dawn would not
be made so fine. The Bengal tiger would not
be fashioned so miraculously well. The poor women
at the fountain are laughing together between
the suffering they have known and the awfulness
in their future, smiling and laughing while somebody
in the village is very sick. There is laughter
every day in the terrible streets of Calcutta,
and the women laugh in the cages of Bombay.
If we deny our happiness, resist our satisfaction,
we lessen the importance of their deprivation.
We must risk delight. We can do without pleasure,
but not delight. Not enjoyment. We must have
the stubbornness to accept our gladness in the ruthless
furnace of this world. To make injustice the only
measure of our attention is to praise the Devil.
If the locomotive of the Lord runs us down,
we should give thanks that the end had magnitude.
We must admit there will be music despite everything.
We stand at the prow again of a small ship
anchored late at night in the tiny port
looking over to the sleeping island: the waterfront
is three shuttered cafés and one naked light burning.
To hear the faint sound of oars in the silence as a rowboat
comes slowly out and then goes back is truly worth
all the years of sorrow that are to come
by Jack Gilbert, American poet (1925 - 2012)
for reminding me that we are Women Warriors:
Cate: I can only recommend that you back off from your emotional state in reference to the inauguration , etc. You are forcing yourself to carry a hot coal that is only hurting you. Be a warrior. Be of good cheer. Keep on doing what needs to be done. Don't watch TV. Unplug it. Study Dharma. Sweetie, do not look or listen to any news today. Stay off Facebook. Be kind to your self: go shopping, have lunch, get a manicure, dye part of your hair pink! Sending you much love! Peace and love, Cate
Nancy: It has helped me a lot to find a group of like - minded women. My advice is to go to Washington and join the women's March. There is still time. In any case, find something that speaks to your most important issues and volunteer. No time to despair. We must be strong: Warrior Women! Get out of your head and emotions and Act! Righteousness and love have kissed. Hugs from Nancy
"Even the heavens wept." Jesus wept. I wept.
The winner of our election,
standing between two former Presidents.