Laboring

Monday Morning Musings:

Sunrise over the Delaware River

We labor, belabor, debate, defend
fend for ourselves, hope for trends

to alter course, reverse, against the wind
we traverse, carrying the past in heart and mind,

find that light is a constant, but time is not—
still we dine and drink some wine

Friday Night, Wine, Challah, Candles

without the rhythm and beats of city streets
reflections found in river, not in town—

I find beauty all around.

It doesn’t change what is, or what may be—
catastrophe, democracy’s fall, more plagues

all this or other. I read horror tales of ghosts
less scary than most of what is real, or almost–the boasts

of the fascist chiefs, the spreading of so many false beliefs
rumors can be deadly, and I think of the imposter priest

who despite his flaws, gets at the truth, and heals
a village. So many maligned, but is there is goodness in us all?

Perhaps. Though it may be hard to tell. Crimes of passion,
crimes of war, crimes of vengeance—so many more—

the people we neglect, the things we regret.
And yet, the moon shines silver in the night,

the sky is blue, the sun is bright. I walk through shadows,
and into light. Watch as birds take sudden flight—soar, unbound—

beauty all around.

Water Lilies, West Deptford Public Library Rain Garden

Today is Labor Day here in the U.S. I took a look at my post from last year. So much has changed. This is a bit of a response to that, I suppose. I kept the format of couplets, though not ending rhymes.


Merril’s Movie, TV, and Whatever Club: We saw the Polish movie, Corpus Christi. It was Poland’s entry this past year for the Academy Awards. We had seen previews for it. I’m not sure if it made it to the theater in Philadelphia before they closed or not. In any case, we both thought it was excellent. Almost like old times, we discussed it over wine and dinner—though our discussion was the next day at a local winery.

Wine and Grilled Cheese at William Heritage Winery.

We watched the French mystery series, Le Chalet with an earworm of a title song—even for those of us who don’t really speak French. It seemed like it was going to be a horror story at the beginning, but it turned out to be similar to an old-fashioned mystery, a Ten Little Indians sort of tale though with two timelines. We both liked it, though it was a bit confusing sorting out the characters for a while. We’re currently watching a Finnish mystery, Deadwind. It’s good, and I think we will become more involved with it as it goes on. There are lots of twists and turns—what seems like a straightforward murder case is not (of course). Both of these are on Netflix.

I just finished reading The Invited by Jennifer McMahon, a ghost story and also a mystery with different timelines and connecting stories. So, you know, a good Merril book. And my favorite podcast Ghost in the Burbs is back. Yay!

Oh, but speaking of favorite podcasts, the delightful Damien Donnelly now has a podcast. So. . . I guess that’s also my favorite (different genres). 😀

43 thoughts on “Laboring

  1. Splendid words, Merril. I want to leap, rejoice, and most of all, hope alongside your verse! The last line mentioning the birds soaring feels celebratory. Please be kind to us, November! xo

  2. I miss my office job because lunch time or the odd 15 minute occasional break always meant I would pop over to WordPress to check in with everyone. Now, away from the office or that sense of routine, I am missing so much. Those precious moments in each photo; the waterlilies, the birds wings, the wine glass, the deer and the soft petals like breath. We hope and get hurt and heal and eat and drink and wish before sleep for a better tomorrow, in the light. Always a joy to walk with you Merril, even in these tough times. Huge hugs and thanks for the podcast mention xxx

  3. Those bird photos are magic. It’s funny, I was looking at posts from January 2017, the woman’s march, how hopeful I was despite my despair at the idea of President Trump. But It has turned out so much worse than I could have imagined. And yet, and yet…you capture that feeling so well. (K)

  4. Those river photos are just breathtaking. My reaction to the following lines was a catch in my throat, followed by a smile:

    And yet, the moon shines silver in the night,

    the sky is blue, the sun is bright. I walk through shadows,
    and into light. Watch as birds take sudden flight—soar, unbound—
    beauty all around.

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