Updated: Sep 30
After years of being extremely careful with protocols around the pandemic, I became lax in not protecting myself this summer. There was such a feeling of liberation in not wearing masks and being able to see people's faces again. In refection I can see where I let my mind seduce me into thinking that there was no REAL change afoot regarding what I had observed the two years prior. My desire to be out from under any worrying about myself took precedence over what was happening in reality.
Nature steps in as a teacher when we spiral out of control as we have environmentally and culturally. Something had to say, "Enough". The pandemic was a huge disruption of civilization and our reactions both individual and collectively are as varied as the cultures who responded. I felt that I understood the need of Covid when it happened. We make choices. The bigger ones can have large consequences. I chose to ignore what I had intuitively understood as a game changer to relax into the comfort of the familiarity of the "before times". I got sick as a result and now I am living with a kind of scar from the encounter. I'm older. Covid blew through me like a destructive weather system and played havoc with whatever part of my body it suited that was no longer under warranty. You can hear this in my recordings of the poetry, I'm sure. I don't know. I'm near deaf now but the vibe in my voice is different. This ain't your mama's influenza.
The days of our throwing our money and weight around to the detriment of the masses of people who we share this planet with are over. As I'm recovering, I'm realizing that I need to think in terms of appreciation of what my instincts tell me about what is truly important in my life. Of course, we try and hang on to what is familiar and it is frustrating not knowing exactly what the alternative entails. What is sure is that if we hang on too long to what is unsustainable, we will perish and so will those we love. I now mask up and wash my hands not so much for myself but for what I neglected to consider in the beginning: others. This virus is a teacher and it is hard to be on the receiving end of the lesson. The idea that I'm recovering with is that the challenge is for us to learn to choose to be decent human beings and care for others as well as ourselves. Something that one would think was not such a difficult thing except for the obvious.
Hafiz struggles in this poem to find the correct way to teach a situation and he is encouraged to alter his perspective. Nature has tried to teach us about our carelessness and our poor choices through this pandemic. It, too, has had to alter the perspective to get the lesson across.
Thank you for listening.
Music: I got sick and I was shocked that it happened because did I not "do all the things?" and "am I not special?" Yes, I am and this part of me that I claim as me, it also belongs to the world. I am powerful in my vulnerability and conscripted to carry forward any collective lesson dished up. No one is exempt from the inherited gene pool and the medicinal or toxic waters we all need to survive. Some disruptions are done by numbers. I was counted.
As is my habit (good or bad, I can't tell) I seek to understand what is under the manifestations of my reality. Why did this viral assault use the particular trajectory that it did to my body? Well, I'm wired to "go there" and this is what I found, The Pretenders playing, Losing My Sense of Taste from their album, Relentless. I don't yet have a clear answer but I've got a soundtrack for the process of solving mysteries.
I must be going
Through a metamorphosis
Or some kind of psychosis
The Gift: Poems by Hafiz and translated by Daniel Ladinsky can be purchased here.
My book can be purchased HERE. E-book HERE. The Season Two blogcasts with audio excerpts from my book begin HERE: in Behind The Lines. This reading of the book excerpts in a mixed media format is Season Two of this blog. These recorded excerpts are outside the chronological order in which the book was written. Podcasts with audio only beginning with episode 22 can be found HERE.