My brother is on a plane to LAX. It’s snowing here in Massachusetts. The power’s out in Georgia. Rainsluice is posting heartbreaking but clarifying articles on Twitter. K is walking the dog. Who knows what William Barr is doing.
Today: we will enjoy a fire. I have two chicken carcasses to make stock. I’m dreaming of a bean soup with sweet potatoes. Cilantro. A little heat. Mmmmm
I’m converting masks with cloth ties to masks with elastic (remember when elastic ordered online took three months to arrive?) Two ties ended up on the quilt above — they’re the orange and white fabric strips with a line of machine stitching on one edge. I like that quarantine energy found a way in. A friend on Instagram liked that I called the black fabric, “the moon ground.”
This was one of those pieces where I kept adding things and then rejecting the additions. Spare horizon and a disturbed sky with an indistinct shelter speak to the moment, I guess.
In the one below, the paths need work. Should they cross over into the green?
In the meantime, it’s worth singing in the shower: I am healthy. I am happy. I am ho-oh-Oh-lee.
All the junk that goes with being human — the sweaty parts, the sour refusals, jealousies ocean-sized and petty, the worm of veins as aging wears out the body. We try, though, don’t we? We try to manage expectations, to overcome the vast array of annoyances, to face our fears as we watch the burning hellscape that is America.
To get up and fight.
It might be our turn to fall. If so, it won’t be from from hubris, but from a toxic blend of corrupt greed and epic stupidity. Plus Facebook. While Oleg Deripaska funds aluminum plants in Kentucky, a passel of white people in Pennsylvania storms Target yelling about their freedom not to wear masks.
Outside, a pounding — perhaps a new deck for a neighbor? Maple leaves ruffle in the wind. They will crisp and yellow and before long, fall and litter the fence line. How do your hold your suffering? With what secret thoughts or unsustainable compromises? Winter, as has been said, is coming.
By the time the neighbor’s new deck is nailed together and stained and holding chairs and company, the election will be upon us. The massive efforts to steal it, already in motion. If only this… if only that… How to do enough?
How many things have you lost of late? What of them matter? Where does Hope dwell in your body?
I think Ruth Bader Ginsburg would want us to hold fast to Hope with a ferocity past all reason. Don’t you?
Prompt: write for five minutes about all the junk that goes with being human.
I was born at dusk: 5:47. Sixty-three seems an impossible number but there you have it! It was a good birthday with ice cream cake, roses, “Little Women,” and calls from both boys.
(If you’re a parent to millennials, you know what a big deal a call is).
A string of grey grey days. I’m back to editing. Back to working on C’s quilt, which I am lap quilting in six pieces. Back to trying to ignore loud construction noise.
Today, the news unsettles me more than usual. Is it because we’ve arrived at that moment when a lawless leader has done so much damage to our institutions (think: the Senate, the DOJ), that he is, for all intents and purposes, a dictator? Nothing to hold him to account.
I worry about the press. I worry about the Freedom of Information Act, especially given how little disclosure is coming by way of the courts. I worry about the election in November. I worry about violence. I worry about how far and wide our petty leader’s retribution will run.
Please don’t tell me how little good worrying does — worry is not lessened by being made wrong for doing it! And, as you know, it’s not ALL I’m doing (though — HA! — I worry that whatever things I manage to do won’t matter enough to counter this tide of corruption).
On the plus side, I read a piece by some pundit opining that whoever the Democratic candidate ends up being matters very little. Turn out is everything. Not the freakin’ swing voters. Turnout. Not the policies. Turnout. That idea takes a little pressure off finding exactly the right (electable) candidate.
The press, the House, and a huge majority are the last places of hope.
Feels an appropriate moment to share this lovely and suitably profane gift from Deb Lacativa. We both know it references not caring about who thinks what about our views. The caring about outcomes, about the future, runs deep.
And then there is this gift from Michelle. I’d sent her my banner from Mo’s project and unexpectedly, she sent me hers. I walk by it many times a day. It cheers me up!
Lastly, thank you so much to all who took the time to read or listen (or both) to an excerpt from my novel. Thank you thank you. Your encouragement means more than I can say!
If you look for it again, don’t be surprised to find it gone. Publishers are weird about what constitutes publication so out of an abundance of caution, I will mark it private at week’s end.
Most people didn’t answer their doors and the few who did mentioned we were the fourth crew to come by recently. There were a few hostile white male millenials. My favorite encounter was with two young girls in pajamas who came to the door and announced that their mother was voting for Hillary. My second favorite was when a pink-slippered older woman smoking on her porch emphatically informed us that she never told anybody who she voted for, ever.
I can’t say canvassing was useful in terms of the election’s outcome but it offered unquantifiable value in dragging me away from the news. There were some seriously beautiful clouds, too.
When I got home, the earlier-setting sun lit the autumnal canopy on fire.
The pictures don’t capture the light at all.
Between the clouds in New Hampshire and the gorgeous sunset at home I was reminded that even in a world tainted by the ascension of a madman, there is majesty and expanse, light and sky.