I’m reading Niall Williams book, This Is Happiness about life in Ireland in a small Irish parish as electricity comes to a place unchanged in a thousand years.
I’m enchanted, and as I read into the night the foghorns never stop. I don’t recall hearing them so clearly and perhaps that’s because smoke is sitting on top of fog. That’s why it was so orange in the Bay area on Wednesday, and then, yesterday was gray and we went from thinking we were living on Mars to considering what it might be like to live in a nuclear winter. My solar powered lights aren’t getting enough power and watering is stopped. We’ve gone from considering air conditioning to running heat.
This morning I’m with Rilke’s words: The inner – what is it? If not intensified sky … “
We’re certainly invited to consider our inner right now, as we continue to isolate and stay apart. I’m with what the sky invites, both in and out, as I wait for light which may or may not come.
In opening to this moment, I feel myself unwinding as though I’ve been mummified. Each unwrapping taps me awake, which reminds me of Edgar Allen Poe’s poem “The Raven”.
He wrote it when his young wife was suffering from, and dying from, tuberculosis. His wife, mother, and brother all died at the age of 24. Different times, and yet, these times we’re living in certainly require a journey within to what guides and leads us on.
Edna O’Brien says of Emily Dickinson’s poems that they are “about solitude and the corridors of the mind. They last forever.”
Leaving the corridors of the mind for a moment, people are hungry.
The number of households the San Francisco-Marin Food Bank distributes food to has doubled since before the pandemic. They’ve gone from serving 32,000 households to 60,000 every week. Before the pandemic, they distributed 855,000 meals per week, and now they give out 1.3 million meals per week.
There are many levels on which to focus these days.
Choose the level and nourishment you need right now in honoring separation and connection, in and out, light and dark.
Light comes. I look out, on fog.