It’s being here now that’s important. There’s no past and there’s no future. Time is a very misleading thing. All there is ever, is the now. We can gain experience from the past, but we can’t relive it; and we can hope for the future, but we don’t know if there is one.
~ George Harrison
There is the past, and there is the future. The present is never more than the single second dividing one from the other. We live poised on that second as it’s hurtling forward—toward what?
~ Laini Taylor, Dreams of Gods & Monsters
I’ve been listening again. To people, to birds, to the wind that comes from different directions and in various forms (a whisper, a puff, a gentle breeze, a cooling sea breeze, sometimes a gusting, blustering, howling and moaning stormy wind), to the trees, to the cats who live with us, to the sounds of the huge farm equipment somewhere nearby doing whatever it is they’re doing this time of year, to the stars and moon at night, to the flowers and weeds in the garden, to the cicadas and frogs, to my grandsons, to the sun and humidity of summer, to the rain on its rare visits, to the sounds of prepping and cooking food, to music, to sound bites and whole lectures, to the hum of appliances and the computer, to family who have come to visit, to airplanes flying overhead, to everything that comes within earshot.
I’ve been watching. The summer flowers blossoming and going to seed, Women’s World Cup Soccer/Football, my grandsons swimming and playing and doing the things that little boys do, sunrises and sunsets, waves coming to shore, the landscape browning during periods of drought and greening after a good rain, the moon in the daytime sky, the moon in the nighttime sky, corn growing in the farm fields, people at the farmers market, the fruits and veggies of summer coming and going, litter on the roadsides and ditches and beaches, water coming in and going out with the tides, and everything that comes within sight.
I’ve been avoiding the national news, thereby avoiding getting caught up in the cycles of drama and disgust and hatred. Father Richard Rohr, in an interview with Oprah (thank you to Carrie for suggesting the interview), said he stopped watching the news because it was like drinking poison. I’m paraphrasing because I don’t remember his exact words, but you get the gist. He’s right. I limit myself to watching the local news so that I can keep informed of what’s happening around here. Yesterday I learned (from the local news) that a man arrested for armed robbery had escaped from a detention center located not far from here. He slipped away from a guard the night before. With handcuffs on, he ran into the woods. It’s probably pretty easy to escape and get lost in some of the woods around here. Because we live close (within 10 miles) to a prison and detention center, we’re supposed to get notifications via phone when a prisoner escapes. I suppose they didn’t think this was worth an alert. The man got about eighteen hours of freedom from his run. He was found yesterday afternoon, having made it to the Maryland/Delaware line (I’m not sure which side of the line since the town he was found in straddles it and exists in both states). They found him in a car with a friend. He still had his handcuffs on. I imagine that made it easy to identify him.
There is, however, one news event I did watch. Megan Rapinoe’s speech at the celebration of the U.S. Women’s Soccer team and their winning of the World Cup. Did you watch it? Or perhaps read what she said? This! is what we need to hear more of, voices raised in love. I think it might be the only way to drown out the hate. In case you missed it, here’s part of it:
I think I’ll just end with this. This is my charge to everyone. We have to be better. We have to love more, hate less. We got to listen more, and talk less. We got to know this is everybody’s responsibility, every single person here. Every single person who is not here. Every single person who doesn’t want to be here. Every single person who agrees and doesn’t agree. It is our responsibility to make this world a better place. I think this team does an incredible job of taking that on our shoulders and understanding the position that we have and the platform we have within this world.
Yes we play sports. Yes we play soccer. Yes we’re female athletes but we’re so much more than that. You’re so much more than that. You’re more than a fan. You’re more than someone who just supports sport. You’re more than someone who tunes in every four years. You’re someone who walks these streets every single day. You interact with your community every single day. How do you make your community better? How do you make the people around you better? Your family? Your closest friends? The 10 closest people to you? The 20 closest people to you? The most 100 closest people to you? It’s every single person’s responsibility.
There’s been so much contention in these last years. I’ve been a victim of that. I’ve been a perpetrator of that.
… But it’s time to come together. This conversation is at the next step. We have to collaborate. It’s takes everybody. This is my charge to everybody, ‘Do what you can. Do what you have to do. Step outside of yourself. Be more. Be better. Be bigger than you’ve ever been before. If this team is any representation of what you can be, when you do that please take this as an example. This group is incredible. We took so much on our shoulders to be here today, to celebrate with you today. And we did it with a smile. So do the same for us. Please, I ask you.
~ Megan Rapinoe
I’ve been doing summer things. Swimming, walking, weeding, mowing, enjoying the foods of summer (melons, cucumbers, tomatoes, sweet corn, zucchini, ice cream, and more). Our grandsons came for a visit last week. We had five days of joy and wonder and play and exhaustion. Because running around with toddlers is very tiring! The Little Wookie is in the Why stage of toddlerhood. The Little Peanut is in the No stage. Fun stuff. Truly it is. Little Wookie reminds me to be and remain curious. Little Peanut reminds me to say yes.
I’ve been reading the words of others with no desire to write my own until now. Even now, I’m not sure it’s desire. Need, perhaps, for my own voice to be exercised and heard. Or maybe I just wanted to share a little of summer with you.
I’ve been sifting through old photos, a thing that has to be done occasionally before I can upload the new photos because I’ve run out of space. It was time to back things up, to sort and delete, to upload a few to my RedBubble shop where I don’t sell much, but I figure the few who buy might want to see something new occasionally.
You’re probably wondering where the color is in some of the photos. I’ve been playing with black and white (and other effects) as I sift and sort.
We are into the sticky days of summer now. This week we’ll enter our third heatwave of the season. I think they define a heatwave as three or more days above 90 degrees (F). It all kind of runs together for me and often feels like it’s been hot forever. Heat and more heat. Humidity and more humidity. And then… a cool front moves through, the temperature drops into the low or mid 80’s, the air becomes drier, and I am once again amazed at how delightful the 80’s can feel. It’s all relative, isn’t it?
That’s about it from me on this very warm, very humid Thursday. Thank you so much for stopping by. I hope you’re having a fine summer (or winter, for those in the Southern Hemisphere), that you’re spending time with family, friends, and community, and that you’re spreading your own message of love in whatever way you can.
Be good, be kind, be love.
A few of the 10,000 reasons to be happy: 1,096) The infinite combinations and possibilities of family, friends, and community. 1,097) The expansion and evolution of the heart, and a way of listening through the heart rather than the mind. 1,098) Voices lifted in love. 1,099) The daily chores, and the good fortune of having daily chores and the ability to do them. 1,100) People who inspire, uplift, and help us move towards something better.