Heroes and Lies

Monday Morning Musings:

Early Morning Moon through the trees

Without moving, we travel far
time and space collapse
as we traipse—everywhere—
from chair and couch

and as the virus rages,
we turn the pages,
hungering for new plots and changes,
a denouement, and all comes clear
order restored, till the world veers

again, and we can only go forward
into what remains to be seen.
other plagues brought serfdom down
and gathered nations in a league—

attempts made, bells rung,
but mostly heroes go unsung
and lies coming tripping off a tongue
gaining currency as far-flung they’re spread
bad news and dread

sell more stories, but check the optics
and we’ll see. Perhaps your story holds a key,
turn the lock, and make our ratings soar
till wiped away by war.

But the lies circle round, and some believe
the tales the sad sacks or the haters weave–
they choose to believe–
but we? We grieve
we grieve we grieve

(well, those of us who see it.)

Sunrise over the water. West Deptford, NJ
Wind whipped. Early morning on the Delaware River at Red Bank Battlefield.

Yet, every dawn is a new beginning
and hope wings to the clouds,
the moon will shine when I am gone,
and waves like a teasing lover
will still kiss the shore,
to dart away,
as far-flung ancient light
dances across the sky, always, and forevermore.

Morning Moon

We still haven’t gone anywhere because of Omicron. Though we bought a few theater series, and there’s a play soon. . .so perhaps, since everyone is required to show proof of vaccination and to remain masked.

And in other news, an authoritarian minority is taking over our government. 2+2=5

We did have a much-needed, lovely family Zoom on Friday night.

Waiting for the family Zoom session.

We streamed, A Hero, Asghar Farhadi’s new film. I’ve liked his previous movies, A Separation and A Salesman, so I was eager to see this one, which is available on Amazon Prime now. Like his other movies, situations are not black and white, and no one is totally good or bad. Rahim is in prison for debt, and while on a two-day leave, he tries to make arrangements with his creditor so he can make a payment and be released, but one lie leads to another, and nothing goes as expected. . . It did give us a lot to talk about, and it also gave us glimpses of Iranian life and culture (and prison system). Another excellent film.

We’re watching the final season of the wonderful show The Expanse, also on Amazon Prime. It’s a very complex show—sort of a grittier, less idealistic version of Star Trek, except it’s about human empires and colonization in space, not aliens. Imagine Rome or the British Empire with rebelling colonies, but in space it’s Earth, Mars, and “the Belters,” as well as various other factions and pirates. It’s not a cartoonish sci-fi show. Characters and situations are not black and white here either. As Capt. Holden says of his world-weary crew, we’ve all done things we regret. (Yet we still root for them and their ship, the Rocinante.)

I’m hosting Quadrille Monday at dVerse, so I’ll be back later today! Cold weather comfort food below. Enjoy!

February Snow

Monday Morning Musings:

Sunrise in January, Delaware River at Red Bank Battlefield.©️Merril D. Smith, 2021

In this winter of confinement
in grey, I look for color and light
of moon and sun, a feathered message

or fairy glow

the still quiet of snow.

I cook and bake,
think how I will celebrate
in future days—
now I huddle and with cat-cuddles
dream, write, read

You can tell this photo is from the summer since I’m not all bundled up in layers of clothing.

and watch the river rushing go
noisy in the quiet falling of the snow.

Delaware River, West Deptford, NJ. The start of the February snowstorm. 2021

So. . .it’s still a pandemic, and I haven’t gone anywhere or done anything special, and there’s nothing much to muse about that’s new. It’s been cold and blustery, so we haven’t even gone for walks somewhere new. Right now, the news here is of the snow. Last year we didn’t have any snow at all, so this snowstorm is a big deal. We had some snow yesterday afternoon and night, and now we’re getting wind and sleet, but we’re supposed to have heavy snow (and wind) this afternoon into tomorrow.

Merril’s Movie/TV/Book Club: We watched the movie Herself (Amazon Prime). My husband and I both enjoyed this movie of an Irish mother who flees an abusive relationship and literally fights to build a home for her daughters and herself. The performances rise above what could be cliché and melodrama (and convenient circumstances); the scenes of domestic violence are handled sensitively. The way the two daughters played together reminded my husband and me of our daughters when they were little girls.
We’re part-way through Season Five of The Expanse (Amazon Prime). It’s a wonderful series. It’s the kind of sci-fi that I like, in that there are real plots and believable characters. It’s a much grittier than the Star Trek world. It’s about colonies and empires, and what happens to Earth’s colonies—Mars and “the belters”—those who have and those who have not. Season one begins with a mystery and a detective, and it goes on from there. It’s a complex show with lots of plot lines that intersect. I highly recommend it.
I’ve read some of Kate Atkinson’s more recent books, so I went back to read Case Histories, the first in her Jackson Brodie series. It’s excellent (though I’m not a fan of Brodie’s sexist comments)—but her writing is just so good, and I love how the cases come together and connect.