Day 17: New Normal

Yesterday I did not journal. After early coffee and breakfast, I hit the ground running with work, both at home, zooming, and on sites, and went grocery shopping.  When the day ended I watched some “Outlander” and went to bed early.

Out And About

Must admit, it was nice to get out and drive around my city.  It was the perfect day for a drive, a mild 50-something-sun-shinnin-blue-sky-day! I was curious about what new things I might encounter, you know…out there…in the outside world.  Getting onto the freeway, I rolled down all four windows and enjoyed rushing fresh air whipping around the inside of my car while listening to anything other than the news.  The 1st Wave channel works to break the mundane news trance if you’re interested.
-Although it was Wednesday, it looked like a Saturday.  Many folks in the neighborhoods were cutting their grass, washing their cars.
-Very light traffic, like what you might notice on a holiday, but, of course, with NO British Columbia plates due to the border closure.
-Many people riding bikes, folks walking their dogs and strolling babies.  Food drive-thrus still open.
-At Fred Meyer, I purchased 8 days worth of food—breakfasts, lunches, and dinners.  (Dang, it was expensive!)  There were small amounts of toilet paper available with signs to purchase no more than two packs of four.  It took me three attempts to retrieve coffee because the isle was too busy.  About 3/4 of the shoppers were wearing masks.
-Also, later, I noticed a white truck with a “Federal” seal driving around Happy Valley.  I’ve never seen that seal before and it caught my attention.  On the social website Nextdoor, a person took a photo of a Volvo that was video recording neighborhoods.  Are they looking for folks breaking the mandate? I wonder if the sightings are related? Curious.

1) an observed joy- Chatted with a neighbor I’ve never met while out for a walk.  We walked in the same direction on opposite sides of the road (plenty of space). We parted ways at an intersection and wished each other good health.

2) a real concern- Nothing new is being reported about airport screenings. I assume passengers are being screened, but, who knows. There appears to be little less airplane traffic these days.  To view every single airplane in the air this second, visit https://www.flightradar24.com/ 

3) a personal challenge- I need to find new ways to eat healthy for less.

4) one personal success (no matter how small)- I stretched for 30 minutes this morning.

5) a random thought (no matter how silly)- It’s so nice out this week.  This morning the air coming in my bedroom window reminded me of summers, when I was a kid, sleeping in our back yard.

Here is a pandemic meme that expresses how I felt yesterday going out to do errands.  Stay safe, stay healthy, stay happy. -Shannon

Poem: Cut Out

snowflake

Cut Out

A woman travels far to
find out who she is
Today I am paper
cut into a snowflake
pasted on a dark blue page

Rain scratches through
a nearby grove
It is you, crossing the room
to grab your keys

Cold air makes my nose run
Words make my eyes water

Shivers shake me in the sheets
wake me to another day

Poem: Tempest

Miranda, the Tempest, 1916
by John William Waterhouse
This morning the sky changed. Wind from a different
direction cast surprise upon and stirred up curiosity
Trees above sway to the song of Fall, make for a lovely dance to sing to
Below, wind combs threw underbrush, grabs the recently fallen,
blows them into whirlwinds
Northern Gale, breathe on me, release from me dead and dying parts
Twirl them up to the sky, lay them on the ground
Churn them into soil; all that death is good for
Compost for a garden I have yet to harvest
***
-Shannon Laws
Re mix of the 2011 poem “Winter Prayer”

Winter Prayer

This morning the sky changed.  The wind came from a different direction than what I was used to, catching me by surprise and creating a sense of curiosity within me.  The trees I walked under moved and swayed to the song of the wind, making for a lovely dance.  The wind combed threw the branches and low lying bushes to grab up the dead and recently fallen, blowing them around in whirlwinds.

A curious thing to watch the wind.  It’s true you cannot see IT but only what it DOES.  My skin grows wrinkled and dry by it; my hair lifts and twirls falling into my eyes.  “Don’t look at me, just feel me” it says, “I’ve come to wash off that which is dead and refresh you for a cold winter, to prepare you for a new spring.  Your days of summer lying in a warm breeze will return, but first you must feel me against your face.  Feel me hit your heart, swooping in deeper than any soap, cleansing your soul with hope renewed.”

Hope gets us through the winter.  How sad for those in the dark age when the world seem a constant winter.  Perhaps they had forgotten what spring flowers smelt like or the hot rays of the summer sun on their face.  If winter last too long the heart will stay cold, frost bitten, hard.

Prayer
Fall wind please blow on me and release from me the dead and dying parts.  Twirl them up to the sky, lay them on the ground, churn them into soil, all that death is good for.
Take those parts from me so that I might see spring again.
I will not forget the flowers
I will not forget the summer sun.
I will not forget the green grass and the lazy days lying beside a lover

Blow wind blow!
Do your worst so that my reward will be greater!

***
Came across this poem from Winter 2011.  It’s only October but had to re-post.

Poetry: Winter Prayer

This morning the sky changed.  The wind came from a different direction than what I was used to, catching me by surprise and creating a sense of curiosity within me.  The trees I walked under moved and swayed to the song of the wind, making for a lovely dance.  The wind combed threw the branches and low lying bushes to grab up the dead and recently fallen, blowing them around in whirlwinds.

A curious thing to watch the wind.  It’s true you cannot see IT but only what it DOES.  My skin grows wrinkled and dry by it; my hair lifts and twirls falling into my eyes.  “Don’t look at me, just feel me” it says, “I’ve come to wash off that which is dead and refresh you for a cold winter, to prepare you for a new spring.  Your days of summer lying in a warm breeze will return, but first you must feel me against your face.  Feel me hit your heart, swooping in deeper than any soap, cleansing your soul with hope renewed.”

Hope gets us through the winter.  How sad for those in the dark age when the world seem a constant winter.  Perhaps they had forgotten what spring flowers smelt like or the hot rays of the summer sun on their face.  If winter last too long the heart will stay cold, frost bitten, hard.

Prayer
Fall wind please blow on me and release from me the dead and dying parts.  Twirl them up to the sky, lay them on the ground, churn them into soil, all that death is good for. 
Take those parts from me so that I might see spring again.
I will not forget the flowers
I will not forget the summer sun.
I will not forget the green grass and the lazy days lying beside a lover

Blow wind blow!
Do your worst so that my reward will be greater!

Poetry: September Wind


Remember the old days around a camp fire when each person took turns adding to the story? Well, what if two friends did the same thing but in the form of a poem? My island friend Peter and I did just that over the past five days.
The results? Read for yourself:

S: The wind combed through the branches and low lying bushes to grab up the dead and recently fallen, blowing them around in whirlwinds.

P: As the ripened thistle does as the Buck dashes through the field in flight

S: Your words, old friend, effect me this way, removing the dross from my character. Your whispers like fire, your love as rays of life, bring a renewing with every caress

P: That brings completion to the unfinished works, of an unfinished mind, while soothing the unfinished soul,

S: Oh you have finished me, the plate is empty
Bread brushes along in circles absorbing any morsal that remains
I sit in front of an empty plate
Thinking back to our time in September

P: The world is ignorant, but awakening. Patience.

S: The world is closed and knows it’s time is ending. Patience.

Thanks Peter!