Writing in a Time of Peril: May 22, 2020

The Johns Hopkins CSSE dashboard is reporting 1.42 million US cases, and 85,974 deaths as of 10:30 am on Friday, May 15, 2020. – From Johns Hopkins daily update.

The Johns Hopkins CSSE dashboard reported 1.59 million US cases and 95,276 deaths as of 12:30pm on Friday, May 22, 2020.– From Johns Hopkins daily update.

“Art invites us to know beauty and to solicit it, summon it, from even the most tragic of circumstances.” ― Toni Morrison

In the middle of a double pandemic, amidst the cacophonous drumbeat of rising hate and division and Covid-19’s raging wildfires, wild rabbits lay sunning beneath ornamental pear trees. While I chronicle, immigrant children are being deported in the middle of the night without protection or representation into more certain danger, the sun shines in sparkling–clear air, and cottony clouds make giant rabbits and dragons in the sky. As I sort through the strangling, drowning, skin, and hair on fire–feelings of anger, sadness, fear, and hopefulness, honey bees and hummingbirds visit each bridal veil and morning glory bloom in my back garden. While I struggle to make use of my feelings, how to make them of use, save my life, the lives of those I love, rather than ineffectual ranting or going silent or still or all of those, Charlie Hayden’s Beyond the Missouri Sky plays on Spotify. As I struggle to lead a writing life, I am relatively privileged, resourced, and safe; yet, I am assaulted daily by the incompetent–double-bind–death assuring responses to Covid–19 by our current leader and his government. I awaken to the voices of my mother and father, aunts and uncles, blood kin and named kin, all gone before me and not gone, insisting that I remember what they have taught my grandmothers and grandfathers and their grandmothers and grandfathers. They insist on action and service to ensure the protection of all life as bright–sparkling–peach sunlight rises over the garden wall. I am afraid, angry, humbled, and in constant mourning as the Delta breeze carries the scents of night-blooming jasmine and the sounds of morning birds call filled with the healing treasures of the day.

I receive the Covid–19 case and death count from Johns Hopkins each morning. I play the music that allows me to sink down onto my knees in grief and lifts me again. I wonder, what ethnic, cultural and generational rituals and music allows anger, fear, sadness, along with, promise’s ambitions and joy’s wells of tears, to tell the victory stories of our beloved departed, and celebrates the precious lives of those of us left behind?

Spotify PlayList: Beyond the Missouri Sky 

https://open.spotify.com/playlist/7qgb9gAlUfW0URVECeirkk?si=GXz98yApR-ex-IP6djDL8g

I go down my to-do list of self-care: meditate, eat well, rest well, get exercise, connect, connect, connect, stay home–except for the pharmacy & the grocery & then only with mask and gloves & when there are very few people about. Watch less TV, but stay informed. Laugh a lot. I channel fear, grief, and rage into expression, action, and art.

I continue to chronicle these times.

A

© Andrea Canaan, MSW, MFA

andreacanaan@gmail.com

Writing in a Time of Peril: 5.1.2020

April 1, 2020:The US CDC reported 186,101 cases (22,562 new) and 3,603 deaths (743 new) on April 1. The Johns Hopkins CSSE dashboard is reporting 217,263 US cases and 5,151 deaths as of 11:00am on April 2, 2020 – From Johns Hopkins daily update.

May 1, 2020: The Johns Hopkins CSSE dashboard is reporting 1.07 million US cases and 63,019 deaths as of 8:30am on May 1. – From Johns Hopkins daily update.

May 11, 2020: The Johns Hopkins CSSE dashboard is reporting 1.33 million US cases and 79,825 deaths as of 1:30pm on May 11.

Covid Mourning

There are no national Native American honorings of Covid dead. There are no national Jewish mourning observances for the dead each Friday. No national services for Seventh Day Adventist or Church of God or Jehovah Witness dead on Saturday. No national Protestant or Catholic or Mormon observances for the dead-on Sunday. There are no national observances for Buddhist or Hindu or Sikh dead. Nor ecumenical or atheist or agnostic dead. No national observances of American dead.

Church leaders, ecumenical councils, the U.S. House of Representatives, the U.S. Senate, and the president have not called for national daily, weekly, monthly mourning observances for all our dead. 

There are no comprehensive lists of the names of the departed in local and national newspapers each Friday, Saturday and Sunday. There are no moving tributes to 75,000 deaths on television or the radio. There are no PSAs about grief’s rage, despair, loneliness and injustice. 

As the number of the dead increase exponentially, so do my shock, disbelief, desperate prayers for a cure, anguished calls for special dispensation from worry, desolation, keening grief, and compound suffering as beloved ones may become sick, become sick, are sick, are dying, die. 

A month before Hurricane Katrina hit New Orleans in 2005, my mother, Dora Ester Ransom Bridges, had a small stroke. The only significant complication was she could not swallow. Doctors placed a feeding tube in her stomach to deliver nutrition. My mother entered a skilled nursing facility in Uptown New Orleans in order to restore her ability to swallow and return home. Three days before hurricane Katrina hit New Orleans, my mother was informed that safe locations were being prepared for skilled nursing home residents in the path of the hurricane. They could not give her the exact location before she was evacuated. After the hurricane hit, communications were so compromised, it was a full week before we located her at the East Louisianan State Hospital, formerly the State Insane Asylum, simply Jackson to most black people in the region. 

Over the phone, my mother gave me a long list of food and supplies to send to her and for other patients and the staff. She let me know that patients and staff would be returning to The Home that November, because miraculously it had not been damaged during the storm or its aftermath. In addition, my mother explained that she would not be coming to live with me in San Francisco. Instead, she would be returning to New Orleans, because she was not going to leave her friend. Her friend was a woman in her thirties who was rendered paraplegic after an automobile accident. I was sure I would convince my mother otherwise when I arrived in Jackson to see about her. 

I traveled to New Orleans during the first week of October. I drove north on I- 12 along wide grassy medians. The southbound lanes were filled with trucks bumper to bumper traveling sixty-five miles an hour hauling temporary housing units, FEMA trailers. I picked up food and supplies from Winn Dixie and Walgreens. I had also taken orders from my mother for herself, other patients and staff for Popeyes, Wendy’s, Pizza Hut and Burger King. I was greeted like a hero with clapping, smiles, and thanksgiving. The trunk of my rental car and every seat were packed with supplies, food and takeout.  The staff carried all of the supplies to a room to organize them for distribution and the food into the dining room for a feast. I returned home without my mother. 

I made a second trip back to New Orleans to bring my mother to live with me in July of 2006 after my mother’s friend’s home was repaired and she was able to move back in it. The Ransom family celebrated my mother’s eightieth birthday with family who survived Katrina and her aftermath in Natchez, Mississippi. When I arrived at the Home to drive her the nearly three hours to Natchez, I found that my mother was oxygen dependent and not recommended for air travel. My mother complained her doctors had refused to remove her stomach tube even though her ability to swallow had returned. My mother insisted that the stinking opening that needed constant cleaning and care be closed. 

I spoke with the doctors who believed that the surgery, while minor, was not minor for my mother. My mother insisted and surgery was scheduled for January 2007. I scheduled a flight based on the date of the surgery. I decided to visit my paternal aunts that Christmas, instead of going to New Orleans as usual, since I would be with her for her surgery. Just before Christmas my mother’s surgery was changed to Thursday, December 21, 2006. I didn’t change my plans. I didn’t go home to be with my mother. I didn’t. 

On Wednesday, December 27, 2006. I received a call from my mother’s longest and best friend. She said my mother was failing and for me to come home. I scrambled to get an earlier flight home. My mother died on Thursday December 28, 2006 alone because I didn’t change my plans. I didn’t go home to be with her.

I wasn’t there when my mother died, but my mother didn’t die alone. I spoke with her nurses and her doctor. The choked up as they described her last hours. They had held her hand, sang to her, prayed with her. They had stayed with her until her last breath. When I went to the hospital to retrieve my mother’s belongings, I brought flowers and food to the hospital staff. While I wept with unrelenting guilt and shame, they held me without judgement with tears spilling down their faces as well.  

I wait for the John Hopkins Covid–19. Update each morning. I feel my mother’s death every day. Only now, I count along with my own regret and loss, the Covid reported deaths. 79,825 deaths as of 1:30pm on May 11, Monday , May 11, 2020.

I shatter when I think that their family members would have given most anything for the choice to hold, sing, to pray with, to say goodbye in person with their loved ones, what I could have given to my mother and myself. I weep knowing how much hospital, nursing home, and congregate living staffs wish for more time, fewer patients, to have all the material, equipment and gear they need, to save more, not have the additional responsibility to do hospice and familial substitute care as their patients died alone, as well as, being in constant fear for their own lives and the lives of their families.

There is no national mourning. I will mourn anyway. In my intense sorrow I will ruminate over the loss of beloved ones. I may focus on little else but our loved one’s deaths. I long to have them back with us. I struggle accepting their deaths. Yet, I become deadened sometimes and shutdown. Sometimes I lose the ability to feel anything but sadness and loss. Sometimes I’m angry, bitter even. Sometimes I feel hopeless and helpless as Covid deaths increase exponentially. 

I receive the Covid–19 case and death count from Johns Hopkins each morning and play the Spotify Playlist I made of the music that allows me to sink down to my knees in grief and lifts me up again. I wonder about what music others would select. What cultural and generational rituals and music that allows grief’s well of tears, tell the victory stories of our departed, and celebrates precious lives left behind. 

Covid Mourning Spotify Play List

I go down my to-do list of self-care: meditate, eat well, rest well, get exercise, connect, connect, connect, stay home–except for the pharmacy & the grocery & then only with mask and gloves & when there are very few people about. Watch less TV, but stay informed. Laugh a lot. Channel fear, grief, and rage into expression, action and art. 

I continue to chronicle these times.

© Andrea Canaan, MSW, MFA

andreacanaan@gmail.com

https://andracanaan.blog

https://www.facebook.com/Andrea-Canaan-Author-456010704809232/

Writing in a Time of Peril: 4.21.2020 Sacrifice The Weak-Re-Open TN

Texas Lt. Governor: Old People Should Volunteer to Die to … 

Anti-lockdown protester wields vile ‘Sacrifice the weak’ poster …

The Johns Hopkins CSSE dashboard* is reporting 672,303 US cases and 33,898 deaths as of 12:45pm on April 17. – From Johns Hopkins daily update.

The Johns Hopkins CSSE dashboard* is reporting 762k US cases and 40.7k deaths as of 11:30am on April 20. – From Johns Hopkins daily update.

The Johns Hopkins CSSE dashboard** is reporting 788,920 US 

cases and 42,458 deaths as of 10:30am on April 21. – From Johns Hopkins daily update.

It was on television. A newswoman is in the foreground looking directly into the camera. All around are men and women standing quite close to each other. The sun is bright. Three men and a woman are standing behind the newswoman. A sign is being held by an unseen person. One of the men is holding and American flag. The unseen person is holding up a sign. Three lines.  Sacrifice The Weak   Re-Open   TN.

Writing in a Time of Peril: 4.21.2020

Sacrifice

The

Weak

Re–Open

TN

The Johns Hopkins CSSE dashboard* is reporting 672,303 US cases and 33,898 deaths as of 12:45pm on April 17. – From Johns Hopkins daily update.

The Johns Hopkins CSSE dashboard* is reporting 762k US cases and 40.7k deaths as of 11:30am on April 20. – From Johns Hopkins daily update.

The Johns Hopkins CSSE dashboard** is reporting 788,920 US 

cases and 42,458 deaths as of 10:30am on April 21. – From Johns Hopkins daily update.

It was on television. A newswoman is in the foreground looking directly into the camera. All around are men and women standing quite close to each other. The sun is bright. Three men and a woman are standing behind the newswoman. A sign is being held by an unseen person. One of the men is holding and American flag. The unseen person is holding up a sign. Three lines.  Sacrifice The Weak   Re-Open   TN.                  

I Am the One

I am the sick

I am the dead

I and the buried

I am the unburied

I am the cremated

I am the unclaimed

I am invisible

Erasable.

I am the nurse assistant

I am the porter

I am the physician’s assistant

I am the security guard

I am the janitor

I am the cafeteria worker

I am the hospice care worker

I am the coroner assistant.

I am the postal worker

I am cannon fodder

I serve and die on Covid-19 battle fields

Without armor or weapons

I am the mortuary assistant

I place the precious remains of the departed into coffins

I transport the precious remains of the departed to places of burial and 

Crematoriums

I return with ashes. 

I am exploitable

I serve and live and die

Without armor or weapons

On U. S. soil

During the times of

The Covid battlefields 

Where is the 

Marshall Plan the 

A Manhattan Project the 

Total mobilization of 

America’s resources and geniuses.

I am expendable

I am the medical provider

I am the nursing home aid

I am the prison guard

I am the mental hospital attendant

I am the detained

I am the cook

I am the visitor

I am the just released. 

I am invisible

I am the transportation workers

I am the grocery clerk

I am the pharmacist

I am the fast food worker

I am the agriculture worker

I am the produce processor

I am the meat packer.

I am the ones named

Weak

Erasable

Cannon fodder

Exploitable

Expendable

Invisible

Untested

Untreated

I am the ones sacrificed

I am the ones to be sacrificed

I am the one who finds the way

I am the one who makes the way

I am the one who shares the way

We always do.

I turn to Sweet Honey in the Rock, Donny Hathaway, and Roberta Flack.

I Remember, I Believe performed by Sweet Honey … – YouTube

Donny Hathaway – Someday We’ll All Be Free – YouTube

You’ve Got a Friend

I go down my to-do list of self-care: meditate, eat well, rest well, get exercise, connect, connect, connect, stay home–except for the pharmacy & the grocery & then only with mask and gloves & when there are very few people about. Watch less TV, but stay informed. Laugh a lot. Channel fear and rage into expression, action and art. 

I continue to chronicle these times.

© Andrea Canaan, MSW, MFA

andreacanaan@gmail.com

https://andracanaan.bloghttps://www.facebook.com/Andrea-Canaan-Author-456010704809232/

Writing in a Time of Peril: 4.16.2020

The Johns Hopkins CSSE dashboard* is reporting 610,774 US cases and 26,119 deaths as of 12:00pm on April 15. – From Johns Hopkins daily update.

The Johns Hopkins CSSE dashboard* is reporting 640,291 US cases and 31,015 deaths as of 11:45am on April 16. – From Johns Hopkins daily update.

I began this writing listening to Abdulla Ibrahim’s, “Water from an Ancient Well.”

Ibrahim’s music was prayerful and calming. I played it as an attempted antidote for my anger, dismay and memories that are rising above the constant boil of our country’s criminally negligent and homicidal response to Covid–19. 

I ‘m witnessing the increasing lethality of the toxic abandonment and neglect of the vast majority of Americans in the behind–our–backs, and the in–our–faces actions and inactions of the current republican administration. It is statistically clear that people who are most at risk of having extreme cases of Covid–19 and dying are; people who people who were already poor before Covid–19, people being made poor by Covid-19,  peoples of color, elders, and people housed in congregate living housing and prisons. It is also abundantly clear these are also the same people living with medical conditions that can be directly traced to the historic and current ravages of systemic and institutionalized racism, classism, and misogyny. The co-combinations of the ravages of systemic and institutionalized racism, classism, and misogyny, and the toxic abandonment and neglect of major american populations are being directly connected to comorbidities with Covid-19. 

2.127.2020            President said Covid-19ncould disappear like a miracle.

3.2.2020                President call Covid-19 a hoax.

3.13.2020              President takes no responsibility for his disastrous lack of response to Covid-10. Blames President Obama.  

3.14.2020              President announced total authority over reversing state  governors stay at home orders. 

3.19.2020              Encourages the use of an unstudied or approved drug for Covid-19 with clear indications that the drug has lethal side effects. 

3.26.2020              President praised the blamed China for Covid-19. Pressured WHO to use racial language to name the virus. Was very upset with WHO when it refused to so. Eventually led to breach between president and WHO leaders.

3.27.2020              President suggests that the Covid-19 threat would be over by Easter.                   

4.10.2020              President said he would be looking at Easter services on the television.

4.14.2929              Threatened to shut down both houses of Congress in order to make recess appointments without congressional  oversight.

4.14.2020              Threatened to defund the U. S. portion of WHO funding.

4.17.2020              Released vague plan for reopening the country without coordinated governmental departmental supports or funding, and further, while making states responsible for testing, his administration has intercepted and confiscated vital testing other critical medical supplies. 

Trump can’t decide whether to blame China for the … – Politico

Donald Trump Archives – FactCheck.org

A Trump Pattern—Claiming ‘Total Authority,’ Then Backing …

I took a break. I went for a bike ride in the sunny and windy clear day. 

My neighborhood had little traffic. Everyone is practicing physical distancing. There were more turkeys and rabbits relaxing in the sun. Mating birds made hot pursuit sex noises. The bees were very busy sampling evening primrose and the ornamental strawberry.  When I returned home I put on Wynton Marsalis’ Standard Time Volume 3 The Resolution of Romance. When it came to, “Never Let Me Go,” I hit repeat each time.

The Resolution of Romance – Standard Time, Vol. 3 – Wynton …

Growing up in New Orleans, I often heard a saying, “Lord, please don’t let me make my move too soon.” In a blues song, B.B. King sings about a woman who didn’t appreciate a man who was down on his luck. It is about the loss the woman endured when she left him before his ship came in. I listened to B.B. King’s song to remind me of the meanings of other similar proverbs; “Don’t count your chickens before they hatch.” “A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush.” 

The current administration delivered two-faced, whiplash inducing, pseudo public health messages. Follow the federal guidelines and resist public health orders, science, common sense, and one’s own self-preservation. 

Is he is making his move too soon?

The current administration is gambling that we will not be able to metabolize the horrific number of the dead. We will become numb and repress our co-responsibility and grief. 

The current government is banking on Americans not remembering how many were delivered up as cannon fodder on Covid-19 battlefields in hospitals, nursing home, congregate living facilities, jails and prisons without the most basic public health interventions with full armor and weapons for all who served infected Covid–19 people.

This president and this republican administration are dead worn. We will not forget. We will take care of ourselves and each other. We will not forget even one preventable death. We will vote him out. 

Put on B.B. King’s “Never Make Your Move Too Soon.”

I go down my to-do list of self-care: meditate, eat well, rest well, get exercise, connect, connect, connect, stay home–except for the pharmacy & the grocery & then only with mask and gloves & when there are very few people about. Watch less TV, but stay informed. Laugh a lot. Channel fear and rage into expression, action and art. 

I continue to chronicle these times.

© Andrea Canaan, MSW, MFA

andreacanaan@gmail.com

https://andracanaan.blog

https://www.facebook.com/Andrea-Canaan-Author-456010704809232/

Writing in a time of Peril: 4.15.2020

April 14, 2020

The Johns Hopkins US COVID-19 dashboard* is reporting 572,689 US cases and 23,134 deaths as of 11:45am. – From Johns Hopkins daily update.

April 15, 2020

The Johns Hopkins CSSE dashboard* is reporting 610,774 US cases and 26,119 deaths as of 12:00pm on April 15. – From Johns Hopkins daily update.

Intimate terrorism, domestic violence is a co-morbidity of Covid-19. 

I sat at a desk in a building on the second floor of the YWCA, overlooking the back-parking lot on Tulane Avenue in New Orleans, Louisiana. The six-floor building had once been a residence for young single working and professional women. The Young Women’s Christian Association was founded in England in 1855. The Worldwide YWCA was founded in 1889 with Great Britain, the United States, Norway and Sweden as founding countries. It had been delivering women empowerment services in New Orleans since the turn of the 20th century. 

By the early 1970’s the YWCA was located in the Mid–City neighborhood of New Orleans. The six-floor former residence still housed recreational swims and swimming lessons, child care, sports and summer camp programs. It also served women with various social, educational and empowerment programs, including the New Orleans Rape Crisis Service and the New Orleans Battered Women’s Service.  

In 1977 the YWCA was funded for one paid staff position for a battered women’s counseling and support service, and that person was me. Battered women who called the rape crisis line were counseled that spousal and intimate partner sexual violation was rape, and that physical, emotional and fiscal abuse were forms of violence against women. When women said they wanted to leave but were afraid to leave, they were counseled that they had every reason to be afraid, that they would, in fact, be in increased danger as they planned to leave, when they left, and for an indeterminate time after they left. 

When women left violent domestic situations, whether a planned or unplanned departure, many came to my second-floor office in a separate building in the YWCA property’s parking lot. Shielded from the major intersections of Tulane Avenue and Jefferson Davis Parkway, the location was relatively safe because it was not a governmental office or agency. Facing these women from behind my clunky, military-issue desk, I asked questions and had them fill out paperwork. I filled the paperwork out for them if they could not read or write well or could not stop crying or shaking or constantly looking at the door. When a woman needed medical care, I called an ambulance to take them to an emergency room. I arranged for a volunteer to accompany each woman and continue giving her support. More often, a volunteer escorted her to a woman-friendly medical clinic for confidential services. Remember there was no HIPPA back then, no expectation that seeking these services could be kept from a current or former male partner, father, brother, or son.   

I called a legal advocate when a woman needed to discuss the legal realities of dealing with an abusive male relative or partner.  The advocates explained the possible negative consequences of reporting abuse to the police and the possible legal ramifications and consequences of not reporting abuse to the police. In addition, they informed the woman about the legal ins and outs of child custody for women who were mothers, even in cases in which children were being abused as well. The legal advocate also informed women about the dubious efficacy of restraining orders: often, men didn’t stay away and police didn’t respond when they called. and allowing the abusive person back into the home made the restraining order null and void. When women elected to pursue a restraining order–which was not often on first-time contact–I called for a volunteer to escort and support the woman through the legal process. 

I gave the woman information and  referrals for shelter, housing, education, medical care, child care, transportation, income resources, and food resources. I also directed them to ongoing counseling and a support group. 

When a woman requested shelter, I made an immediate call to the only battered women’s shelter in the Deep South to see if there was an opening. If there was an opening, I made an immediate referral. If there was not an opening, my volunteer team, the woman, and I made an emergency contingency plan to keep her as safe as possible until safe housing was located. This all took four to six hours, depending on the need for medical care or a restraining order and other referrals and supports. I kept drinks and snacks, along with lots of tissues, in my file drawer. We had a limited budget for lunches, bus fare and cab fare. Some days no women came, a rare occurrence.  Some days there were as many five women in my office. 

After more than a of year working with battered women, I started to wonder why more women didn’t kill the men who repeatedly raped and beat them near to death. I began to have an ongoing fantasy that at the end of each counseling session, I would pull out the heavy metal bottom drawer of my desk. I took out a thirty-eight special, a box of bullets, a gun cleaning kit, a snug pouch for the gun and a brown paper bag to carry it all. I took the woman down to the parking lot where a human target was stationed. I taught her basic self-defense, gun safety, gun cleaning, and target practice. I told her that she had the God-given right to protect her children and herself  from rape and assault. 

But that was fantasy.  As my session with each woman ended, I was filled with rational fears about her safety, the strength of the supports we were able to provide, and the faint glimmer of hope that she would become survivor rather than victim. I filed the paperwork, tidied up the office and packed my things to leave for home. 

As I drove to collected my two-year-old daughter from day care, I breathed  in my commitment to anti-violence, the empowerment of women and girls and all of those harmed by intimate terrorism. I breathed out my vivid imagined response to violence. I shook off my invitation to harm another. I looked forward to my daughter’s unconditional love, constant questions, run-on telling about her day, and her zest for life and joy. 

In these times of Covid-19, many children, women and elders find themselves on lockdown with perpetrators of incest, rape, batterment, and emotional and psychic violence with no place to go for respite,  no way to keep the perpetrator at bay and  no one to tell. I recommitted to engage in safe ways to protect, support and preserve the lives of vulnerable children, elders, women and men against domestic violence and terrorism.

It is clear that intimate terrorism, domestic violence and woman slaughter is a co-morbidity of Covid-19. It will become ever clearer during the weeks and months of quarantine to reduce the spread of a deadly virus that another destroyer of minds, bodies and souls flourished in epidemic proportions.          

A New Covid-19 Crisis: Domestic Abuse Rises Worldwide

PROTECTING CHILDEN DURING THE COVID-19 OUTBREAK

I go down my to-do list of self-care: meditate, eat well, rest well, get exercise, connect, connect, connect, stay home–except for the pharmacy & the grocery & then only with mask and gloves & when there are very few people about. Watch less TV, but stay informed. Laugh a lot. Channel fear and rage into expression, action and art. I go to my bookshelf and pull Pat Parker’s book of poetry, Woman Slaughter, from the shelf.  I bring up her reading of the title poem, “Woman Slaughter” on YouTube. I read along with her remembered beloved voice.

Woman Slaughter: Pat Parker: 9780884470168: Amazon.com …

I continue to chronicle these times.

© Andrea Canaan, MSW, MFA

andreacanaan@gmail.com

https://andracanaan.blog

https://www.facebook.com/Andrea-Canaan-Author-456010704809232/

Writing in a Time of Peril: April 14, 2020

 April 10, 2020

The Johns Hopkins CSSE dashboard is reporting 467,184 US cases and 16,736 deaths as of 10:30am. – From Johns Hopkins daily update.

April 12, 2020

Coronavirus: Mass Graves Dug In New York City As Morgues …    From Buzzfeed, April 10, 2020.

President Trump said on Twitter that he would watch the online service of First Baptist Dallas, led by Robert Jeffress, a prominent Trump supporter who has said that non-Christian religions are sending their followers to hell. Vice President Pence said he would also attend church virtually, from his living room.    

–From The New York Times 

April 12, 2020

In Dallas, Mr. Jeffress thanked Mr. Trump from the pulpit of First Baptist for defending religious liberty. In his service on Sunday, Mr. Jeffress portrayed Mr. Trump as a supporter of religion, although the president does not regularly attend church or exhibit deep knowledge about the Bible.        

–From The New York Times

April 12, 2020

Mr. Jeffress has lashed out at other faiths, calling the Catholic Church an instrument of Satan, describing the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints as “a cult,” claiming that Islam “promotes pedophilia” and saying that Jews, Muslims and others would go “to Hell.” –From The New York Times

April 13, 2020

The Johns Hopkins CSSE dashboard is reporting 557,590 US cases and 22,109 deaths as of 9:00am (US EDT). – From Johns Hopkins daily update.

April 14, 2020The Johns Hopkins US COVID-19 dashboard* is reporting 572,689 US cases and 23,134 deaths as of 11:45am. – From Johns Hopkins daily update.

pastor who defied social distancing dies after contracting Covid-19 –From New York Times April 14, 2020

April 12, 2020

What there is to see on my bike ride: small, round, green berries hover beneath the domes of white pyracantha blossoms, promising that green will turn to red as spring makes a way for summer’s return.  Birds of paradise bloom in blushing oranges, yellows, and blues. California buckeye and saucer magnolias fluttered their last blossoms. Fat rabbits hide in the tall grasses, only their improbably large sun–illumined ears visible. Falcons, eagles and hawks circled high in the blue sky, searching, searching. 

 I lift my head. 

I pray.

Let us call upon our mothers and grandmothers, our great–great–grandmothers and their mothers’ mothers to sing to us, soothe, comfort, allow our keening to connect us past and present, memory to memory, knowing to knowing, healing to healing. 

Let us take in their scents of pepper mint, bergamot oil and dusting powder after Saturday night baths.

Let us be lifted up by their prayers of strength, determination, insistence on life, love, service and bettering.

Let us serve sips of broth and water and tea and use every embroidered handkerchief we own when every tissue box is empty.

Let us wipe faces with cool cloths, sponge bodies of waste and sweat and tears. 

Let us touch comfort, soothe, assure and be calmed, as we bend under suffering, anticipate our heartache.

Let us remember how to open so that we may be a companion. 

Let us whisper the love and honor that makes all our lives dear.

Let us weep.  

Let us offer what we can as friend, sister, aunt, neighbor, co-worker, and even as a stranger to those who need us. Let us bring balms to comfort and ease suffering. Let us make a meal for ten and leave it at our neighbor’s door.

Let us call upon our mothers and grandmothers, our great–great–grandmothers and their mothers’– mothers’– mothers to sing to us, soothe, comfort, allow our keening to connect us heart, mind, body and soul, past and present, memory to memory, knowing to knowing, healing to healing.  

The gentle wind cools the tears on my face. I’m almost home.

I go down my to-do list of self-care: meditate, eat well, rest well, get exercise, connect, connect, connect, stay home–except for the pharmacy & the grocery & then only with mask and gloves & when there are very few people about. Watch less TV, but stay informed. Laugh a lot. Channel fear and rage into expression, action and art. 

Every few hours I play Andrea Bocelli singing acapella at Duomo Cathedral in Milan, Italy again. 

I continue to chronicle these times.

© Andrea Canaan, MSW, MFA

andreacanaan@gmail.com

https://andracanaan.blog

https://www.facebook.com/Andrea-Canaan-Author-456010704809232/

Writing in a Time of Peril: April 10, 2020

The Johns Hopkins CSSE dashboard is reporting 432,579 US cases and 14,830 deaths as of 10:45 am on April 9. 

The Johns Hopkins CSSE dashboard is reporting 467,184 US cases and 16,736 deaths as of 10:30 am on April 10. Do the math.

There is more to fear than fear itself

I spent two hours doing what I swore I would never do. I watched Facebook videos of cute babies and children doing breathtaking things, cute animals doing wonderful things, spectacular soloists, duets and choirs singing awe–inspiring songs, and I cried and cried and cried.

And when my national binge watch preoccupation was over, I realized. Orange Julius was not a hellacious dream. I was furious. I was more than furious. I was wildly That forgetfulness and head-in-the-sand and drugs and alcohol, and gambling, and binge-watching-what-ever, and denial, frozen in a deer–in–the–headlights–stance, poor–me–helplessness, and impotent rage will not save me, will not save any of us. 

More than three years of failed presidential leadership, and now Covid-19, reveals we are a fourth world failed state led by an incompetent … you fill in the blanks. 

I am committed to staying informed, praying, meditating, moving, staying connected, loving, and engaging in positive–caring action, remembering, not forgetting. I am also asking the same of you. 

Stay informed, pray, meditate, create, move, connect, connect, connect, love, engage in positive action, remember, don’t forget. 

America Is Acting Like a Failed State – The Atlantic

Stay informed, pray, meditate, create, move, connect, connect, connect, love, engage in positive action, remember, don’t forget. 

COVID-19 TRANSCRIPT: 4/6/20, The Rachel Maddow Show …

Stay informed, pray, meditate, create, move, connect, connect, connect, engage in positive action, remember, don’t forget. 

Donald Trump stokes fresh coronavirus row as Wuhan reopens

Stay informed, pray, meditate, create, move, connect, connect, connect, engage in positive action, remember, don’t forget.

Trump’s failed presidency – Brookings Institution

Stay informed, pray, meditate, create, move, connect, connect, connect, engage in positive action, remember, don’t forget. 

Jay Inslee sounds an ominous warning as Trump’s failures …

Stay informed & Pray, meditate, create, move, connect, connect, connect, engage in positive action, remember, don’t forget. 

FY2020 Budget Cuts – Environmental Protection Network

Stay informed, pray, meditate, create, move, connect, connect, connect, engage in positive action, remember, don’t forget.

DOJ asks Congress for broad new powers amid Covid … – Vox

Stay informed, pray, meditate, create, move, connect, connect, connect, engage in positive action, remember, don’t forget.

Trump’s IG Purges Add Fuel to Oversight Controversies …

Stay informed, pray, meditate, create, connect, move, connect, connect, engage in positive action, remember, don’t forget. 

Trump administration ignored pandemic warning from White …

Stay informed, pray, meditate, create, move, connect, connect, connect, engage in positive–action, remember, don’t forget.

Advocates Say Trump Budget Cuts Will Hurt Country’s Most …

Stay informed, pray, meditate, create, connect, connect, connect, engage in positive and productive action, remember, don’t forget.

The Republican Plot Against Voting Turns Deadly | The New …

Stay informed, pray, meditate, create, move, connect, connect, connect, engage in positive action, remember, don’t forget.

Medical personnel being targeted

https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/world/as-coronavirus-fears-grow-doctors-and-nurses-face-abuse-attacks/ar-BB12kjM9?ocid=spartandhp

Stay informed, pray, meditate, create, move, connect, connect, connect, engage in posit action, remember, don’t forget.

Black men kicked out of store for wearing masks – AJC.com

Stay informed, pray, meditate, create, move, connect, connect, connect, engage in positive action, remember, don’t forget.

And yet

On a bike ride today jacaranda, wisteria and azaleas bloomed. Humming birds and butterflies flitted about in the air. Mourning doves sang from porch. Fat wild rabbits rested along the edges of wide spring grasses. Red robin, forsythia and quince greeted me along the path and as I passed my neighbors’ gardens. While peddling, I looked up into a sky filled with shifting–drifting clouds filled with floating dragons and fairies and castles and giant–gray–white bunnies with lizard heads. The air was sparkled clear. The air streamed across my face. The sun warmed my skin. All, despite tens of thousands of our beloved’s souls having left us, are now in flight. 

I go down my to-do list of self-care: meditate, eat well, rest well, get exercise, connect, connect, connect, stay home, except for the pharmacy & the grocery (and emergency treks to rescue errant packages) & then only with mask and gloves & when there are very few people about. Watch less TV, but stay informed. Laugh a lot. Channel fear and rage into expression, action and art. 

I put on Aretha Franklin, I Never Loved a Man the Way I Love You. I repeat, “Save Me.” 

I Never Loved A Man The Way I Love You | Discogs

Aretha Franklin – Save me – YouTube

Later I put on. Aretha Now. I repeat, “Save Me.” 

Aretha Franklin – Aretha Now | Releases | Discogs

Aretha Franklin – Think [1968] (Original Version) – YouTube

I continue to chronicle these times.

© Andrea Canaan, MSW, MFA

andreacanaan@gmail.com

Get Caught Up: https://andreacanaan.blog