Posted in pandemic, Projects, Random ramblings, writing

Head Down Blinders On

A mere few decade of months ago I read the words that Kitty O’Meara penned and wrote a post called Not at Peace. The original words would roll around in my head occasionally but now they don’t seem to ring true. Sadly those words were lost on far too many here and around the world. The change in the tone texture of these words have been rattling around in my head for a while.

But then I worried. Is this plagiarism? So I called up the services of an impartial outside editor to review what I wrote and get an honest opinion. We had a long phone conversation (in itself a wonderful delight) and in the end I felt that the artistic license with the words were honouring the original structure but changing the intent. Which is allowable, perhaps even encouraged? I even found a poetry site that the first lesson was to change a classic poem by switching out certain words and in those examples they put the revisions in bold as I have done below.

“Imitation, conscious imitation, is one of the great methods, perhaps the method of learning to write. The ancients, the Elizabethans, knew this, profited by it, and were not disturbed. As a son of Ben [Jonson], Herrick more than once rewrote Jonson, who, in turn, drew heavily on the classics. And so on.”—Theodore Roethke, “How to Write Like Somebody Else”

And some people stayed home

and read books

And listened

And they rested

While others went to the gym for exercises

And some made art and played

While others used old ways of being

They didn’t stop

They certainly didn’t listen

More deeply

Some self medicated

While some went to crowded churches and prayed

While others, out in bars, danced

And someone, too many, won’t ever see their shadows

While others began to think defiantly

And people died

And in the presence of people who

lived in arrogant ways

Dangerous, meaningless and heartless

The virus flourished

Even the earth began to keel

And then the danger failed to end

People lost themselves

They grieved for normal

and forgot the dead

But some made good choices

And dreamed of new vistas

And maybe, just maybe, created a new way of seeing life

While others sought to destroy the earth

Just as they were destroyed

B.L. Cruikshank, April 2021

    

Maybe this seems incredibly negative but the doom and gloom of the third wave is like a tsunami. There is no escaping what’s headed towards us; even for those of us that have following the guidelines. It feels like the good choices of the individuals/couples/families/communities don’t carry enough weight against the ill informed selfish choices of those who believe, with 3.01 Million dead, that this is a hoax or just like the flu.

As time rolls out I feel like like we have all become more introverted isolated insular. Less texts, less phone calls, less emails and just more time within our own space. Due to Washing Day I lost all my contacts and could not call or text very many people. Sadly no one missed me and I don’t say that from a personal level. I say that from a “we are in this together” status but so many people just aren’t reaching out anymore. It seems like we have our head down and blinders on (farmer’s daughter on that saying — anyone else even know it?) and are ploughing straight ahead. Not sure where the he_ _ double hockey sticks we are going. It feels like a collision course with that tsunami I mentioned above.

Interesting to note that my outside editor friend felt the same way — in fact insular was her word. Then today I read a blog post that https://margaretghanna.wordpress.com/2021/04/22/a-pandemic-rant/ absolutely nailed how I was feeling. It addressed, in words, the inequities that already existed in the world and more that the pandemic have brought forth. Then I saw the tweet below and I feel like she totally nailed this with a backdrop of a children’s freedom rally at non other than the Vimy Memorial featured In Stark Contrast plus a anti mask freedom rally in Maple Creek. Quiet calm Maple Creek, where the local rancher will probably tip his hat at you if you met in the doorway, is going to be home to an Ontario man who is driving across Canada creating rallies. Add to that some very vile negative messages left literally on the sidewalk in front of a Regina hospital where patients are fighting for their life. It just defies how I saw this world.

So there you have it. The long version not the short story. The fairly apparent despair that 15 months in things seem worse; the politicians here aren’t taking action and people are back to having 100+ bush parties.

Head down, blinders on, walking straight ahead and making good choices. It feels like all I can do.

Bernie

Author:

I have had a love of the written word for my entire life. It's no surprise that eventually I found a platform where I could write. It's random; sometimes funny, occasionally sad, maybe even at times from anger and I lean towards creative photography and hands on crafts. I have a few blogs that high light these interests.

10 thoughts on “Head Down Blinders On

  1. The poem is impactful, I can see how it would stay with you, that you knew it was relevant and with your creative license could speak directly for our current global state. I see it too, we are turning more and more inward; against, it seems, our concerted efforts at the onset of this pandemic, to take great pains to keep connected, to reach out, we were not going to let the situation sever lines of communication. But over the duration we have moved apart. Fostered in part by growing conflicting theories and misinformation. I still use face book and instagram, none of my contacts post anything inflammatory. Rather the focus is on keeping things positive, or inspirational and supportive in nature. So I suppose in my circle I inhabit the fortunate group of community that is doing our best to stay connected. It helps living on a small island with 300 neighbours! I notice it most when I go off island in to town how grateful I am for my community. My brother in law and his partner both had covid; suffered, but didn’t need hospitalization thankfully.

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    1. I just found your comment in the spam folder?? Weird considering WP must know we follow each other’s blog.
      None of my friends post inflammatory stuff either but it just seems like it’s all too much. I feel like I am becoming Debbie Downer but perhaps I’m not alone. There have been a few readers who felt the words resonate with them.
      I live very rural and unless I have to go to work we just stay isolated. Perhaps I’m too isolated. Don’t really have any answers.
      Our nephew just got diagnosed (out where your daughter lives) and isn’t really sick fortunately. Picked it up at the barber’s. Just can’t be too careful these days. Thanks for stopping in to read and responding. It’s nice to connect.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Oh Bernie. I so relate. I feel insulated, disconnected, disinterested even, in outside connection — and still, I want to see and be with those I love — before I went out to help my daughter and family I thought long and hard about what was the right thing to do in this situation. She desperately needed help but should I go…. In the end, supporting them was most important — and we held to social distancing and maintaining their isolation as her husband’s health conditions make him vulnerable.
    And still…. I worried. And then, while I was away, my daughter here and her partner both got Covid! They were at a small (8 people) backyard firepit gathering. One mistake and 3 people at the party got it. The host didn’t know he had it… Fortunately, while it was awful, they didn’t need medical assistance. But it was scary and an eye-opener.
    And still…. people I thought were more sane and conscious are posting nonsense about mask-wearing and social distancing and government’s role and why we shouldn’t be sheep and I am flabbergasted and saddened… don’t they see that spouting such dangerous nonsense is being a sheep to some sort of false god of independence in a world that is critically interdependent? Which means… I have pulled away from reading my social media feeds — more insulating….
    Thank you for what you wrote — it’s critical to our well-being — and probably our survival too!
    Hugs

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you Louise for the heart felt comment. It isn’t just about letting go of what the idiots are doing and you seem to get that. It’s about how we are feeling and the poem sort of reflects my feelings of being insular. I so get that you had a tough time making the decision to go but mental health of our children (which is a topic for another day or perhaps a walk in your river area someday in the very very far future when we can go to Calgary again) and helping them is so important. I get why you went and I bet you felt guilty. Sorry to hear about your daughter but thankful they obviously got off easy with how their body handled Covid. Our nephew just got diagnosed and again getting off easy. He went and got his crazy wild beard shaved off and got it from his barber. Which means masks work as he wasn’t wearing one and then one wonders how often the barber changed his mask. And then that leads to the rabbit hole of all those people out there going on about their civil liberties and how we are all sheep. I’d rather be a sheep in a flock than the one that gets eaten by the lone wolf so I will keep my mask on and basically stay away from people for who knows how long. Thanks for the support. Take care. Bernie

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    1. I’ve been watching world news. It seems it’s not just Canadians and Americans who are on a collision course with Covid. I am deeply saddened by the activities of many and many times surprised — I’ve always been a little on the naive side and it shows at times. I just always believe the best but have been proven wrong enough times you would think I would learn. Thanks for responding. I felt like I was going on a limb with the poem.

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    1. I get that we can only make our own choices – I find it hard to reconcile that “their” choices affect all of us with such a huge impact. Thanks for reading and responding. I appreciate the support.

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  3. Make good choices. That’s the bottom line of life. Or turning the idea around, as a friend used to tell his kids, don’t do stupid things. Seems obvious, yet…

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    1. Love your friends line! I used to tell my son to pack his good judgement in his back pocket and check it when he needed to. It’s hard sending them out into the world trusting that they know the real values. Some bad choices are inevitable as one goes through life but turning Covid into the “communist government controlling us” and the “health authority serial killer sticker” is beyond a bad choice. Thanks for responding. I’ve been working on the poem and the post for a week or so and feel that maybe people are getting sick of my pandemic posts but felt strongly compelled to hit publish.

      Liked by 1 person

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