Mrs. N. had no intention what so ever of writing anything more here until her triumphant return from her visit to various dystopian European countries that, although they may have magnificent gardens, happy populations, and 21st century mass transportation systems…. are, my government informs me, misguided Hell Holes of Socialism tottering on the brink of collapse. All that changed this morning.
As the sun rose I armed myself with rake, bucket and weed puller and headed out to crawl around my extensive perennial beds intent upon ridding them of weeds. Engaging in active meditation if you will. All was better than well as I noticed that so very many of my favorite perennials had self seeded themselves in dozens and dozens of new places, as if by some magical intention. I was busy happily crawling around from shrub to shrub, plant to plant, popping out dandelions, stray grasses and weeds, picking up the odd fallen magnolia leaf when I came upon it.
There was no mistaking what happened here. It was clearly cold blooded murder of an entire family of children. Lives, barely begun, snuffed out by some evil heartless fiend who cared not for the suffering his actions had wrought. I asked myself… “Who could have done this?… Who could have so little regard for the lives of others?… I had no answers, only theories. It could have been the evil serpent, the black snake who I permit to live unmolested in my giant mulch pile of magnolia leaves. (Am I to blame?) It could have been the raccoon who, so different from you or I, prefers to venture forth at night, wearing his mask, and praying with his little hands to what Gods I know not. (Should I have shot him as my neighbors do?) I don’t think I will ever know the answers to any of these questions, but, even if I did, it would do nothing to bring back the tender little lives that were ended so abruptly, and so brutally.
I thought about the endless news coverage of the bombing in Boston and its aftermath. Hour after hour, day after day of coverage of every angle, every nit picking detail of everything and everybody involved. Interview after interview, witness after witness, expert after expert…. and it made me ill to think that such a promising species should end up so hideously deranged. This morning it was all talk of the Death Penalty. Yesterday it was all talk of ending the quest to write a decent set of laws to deal with immigrants because, after all, the Boston bombers were immigrants. The day before that it was all talk of the defeat of legislation to make firearms less easily available to the mentally ill and to people with criminal records. Earlier today I read that two studies now point to a rather dramatic increase in autism in mothers who consumed drugs like Prozac to “balance” their “unbalanced” brain chemicals. Who could have possibly guessed that taking drugs to alter the functioning of your brain could fuck up the developing brain of your unborn child?
Sometimes, times like this, times when there doesn’t seem to be any corner of sanity to crawl into with my blanket to suck my thumb and mumble to myself… things oddly start to clear. I find myself laughing at something stupid, and rejoice, in my heart, that I am somehow, or, some way, wired to appreciate the stupid (rather than ballet, or, liver pate). That I cannot only see that it’s all the game of black and white, but, understand that for either side to win would be truly monstrous. For either side to win would ruin it all. For either side to win would be the end.
Before I came in from the garden today I decided to do a little patching of some bare spots in the lawn. Anyone who follows my musings here knows full well the “problems” I had last year with moles turning my manicured lawn into swiss cheese. Rather than poison, trap or otherwise end their little lives last year through murder I turned for council to the one place that has never failed me.
I watched The Godfather once again and, as usual the way to move forward became instantly clear. It was after Sonny was hit at the causeway and it fell to Tom Hagen to tell his Godfather what everyone else seemed to already know. He informed him that his oldest son had been murdered. Upon hearing the terrible news Don Corleone said this…
“I want no inquiries made. I want no acts of vengeance. I want you to arrange a meeting with the heads of the Five Families. This war stops now.”
Instantly I knew what to do. I left the moles in peace and met with the shrubs, flowers, trees, insects and birds… and a grand peace was made between us all. This spring all the moles are gone. It was when I was spreading some nice soil around the bare spots left by the mole tunnels and raking in some grass seed that it came to me. I realized that I was getting out of the country just at the right time. That I was removing myself from the endless blather of the talking heads on television who will continue to go on and on about the Boston Bombing until…. the natural end comes to the story.
“What will the natural end be?” you ask….
Remember the coverage of the police firing hundreds and hundreds of rounds of bullets into the fishing boat the fugitive 19 year old brother had taken refuge in, in some guys back yard? You will know that the end has arrived when you hear on television that the owner of the boat has shown up at the police station with this question.
“Hey… Who the fuck is gunna pay for all the fucking holes in my boat?”
At the beginning of Chapter One of “The Denial of Death” Ernest Becker writes…
“In times such as ours there is great pressure to come up with concepts that help men understand their dilemma; there is an urge toward vital ideas, toward a simplification of needless intellectual complexity. Sometimes this makes for big lies that resolve tensions and make it easy for action to move forward with just the rationalizations that people need. But it also makes for the slow disengagement of truths that help men get a grip on what is happening to them, that tell them where their problems really are.”