Winter’s coming

Sometimes, these past few months, as I let the world’s news glance off me, I allow myself to sit (only for moments) with a growing truth: That the bedrock upon which I lived for more than 50 years is shifting and breaking, and there is no putting it back (any more than one can put the earth back after a quake), and that this time of relative (surface) calm (in which I can push looming catastrophe into the canyons of my life, out of sight/out of mind) might someday, in retrospect, feel like the last weeks of fall, when the beauty is mostly (but not entirely) gone and you can see the shape of the season to come, and you want only to cling to the vibrant colors as long as you can, the way you imagine the last few leaves would be doing if they could, you know, literally cling, and could know anything about the inevitabilities of temperature, wind, or their fate. We know the spring will come round and everything will bloom again, but not for them.

Not for them.

A few dots

The Bad Guys Are Winning

We’re Not OK

A War on Books?… (via ALA’s Office for Intellectual Freedom newsletter)

Is Cozy Season a Cry for Help?

13 thoughts on “Winter’s coming

  1. Kate says:

    I didn’t get a chance to read all your dots yet, but as the wind is whipping and we’re solidly moving into winter here, I am guilty of being a bit Scarlett O’Hara “I can’t think of that now. I’ll think of that tomorrow.” I don’t have anything to add. Just here to say I see you and am grateful that your way with words and pictures managed to make the really fucking dark, beautiful.
    Kate recently posted…Tuesday ThingsMy Profile

    • Rita says:

      Ah, Kate. I’ve been doing a lot of Scarlett myself, and I think it’s why I’ve been a bit blocked in my writing. I’m trying to figure out how to be in this new normal; it’s a dance and I’ve got clumsy feet.

      Thank you for being OK with my dark. I know through it is the only way to the right kind of light for me.

  2. Robin Ruff Leja says:

    Funny that I would read this now, as I JUST finished editing today’s photos of the waning fall beauty, including my strawberry plant that looks exactly like yours! I am a fall *fanatic* to put it mildly, who spends two months of the autumn season driving from park to park to take it all in. From late September to mid November, I must do it, record every bit of the color show in photos. I make the excuse of using them in my garden blog, but the hundreds of photos that result are a whole lot more than I need for my blog. And still I go, I have to. You’d think I’d be heartbroken when it starts to end, like now. But I’m not. Because the austerity is still beautiful, and soon winter snow will arrive, and off I’ll go again. Just another day on the green side of the grass, you know? Did I mention I’m a cancer survivor? That might explain a lot.
    Robin Ruff Leja recently posted…Beloved OctoberMy Profile

    • Rita says:

      I get this. I try so hard to take it all in, and every year the season feels so fleeting. I also find a lot of beauty in winter’s austerity. There are things I love in every season, but I will admit that high summer is the hardest one for me to find affection for.

        • Rita says:

          I need to plant more things that attract butterflies. I did love the hummingbirds this last summer. I do love early summer, but August kills me. And the new normal high temps really get to me. I’ve been working on changing my mindset about summer, but it’s a work in progress.

    • Rita says:

      I’ve been fairly sand-bound for a while now, so I get it. It’s been awhile since I’ve shared dots, I know. I wasn’t going to. I was going to let the piece stand on its own. But it felt like it wouldn’t have quite the same meaning without them. Thanks for letting me know you appreciate them. Sometimes I worry about contributing in a negative/unhelpful way to everyone’s overload.

  3. Robin Ruff Leja says:

    And as for your dots, I appreciate it. The world is in a cold, dark place right now, and even though we get snippets of good news, there’s just so much bad. Sometimes I actually think “Well I’m fairly old, maybe the dystopian future won’t include me “ but that’s just silly. My kids, my grandkids! Meanwhile, I rant on Twitter about it. Tell you what, let’s not call it ranting. Speaking out is a better description.
    Robin Ruff Leja recently posted…Beloved OctoberMy Profile

    • Rita says:

      Yes. It’s my kids I worry for. And I vacillate between saying something (as I did here) and being quiet about it. I haven’t landed on what feels right.

  4. Ally Bean says:

    Good dots. The comic is too spot on. The Atlantic article makes me wonder about our future as a country in an increasingly evil world– or maybe we’re more aware of how things work now, seeing what has always been there? Rhetorical question.

    Banning books seems like something in a movie, but I realize it is not. I’d guess that now that books are in print and on e-readers, banning any one book entirely would be impossible. Or at least I hope it is.

    I like the idea in the last dot that “coziness [is] a heightened, almost erotic feeling of belonging.” That’s a brilliant way of describing it, and one that makes sense in light of the divisive times in which we find ourselves.

    • Rita says:

      Glad you found value in the dots. Your rhetorical question has been a real one for me. Part of the challenge of the past few years for me has been coming to terms with realizing that many things I once believed are false, and then wondering what else I might still be wrong about. And the book challenges–those hit too close to my English teacher/librarian heart. I’ve never seen anything like what’s happening now, and it’s so distressing. I appreciated the chance to think a little more deeply about the whole cozy thing going on, and what my own desires for coziness might be about. I’ve tended to think it’s more about just wanting a safe place to rest, and isn’t that a good description of belonging?

  5. TD says:

    I’m experiencing too much of which you speak in this writing, Rita. I do see your deeper message and have very similar thoughts and feelings fleeting through my being. So much here in very few words.

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