Sunday, January 3, 2010

New Year....New Post

I promised in my last post that it was "to be continued". I guess I have to now live up to that.
Not that I don't want to, or can't, but lately (as you can see by my blogging), I've had a lot of thoughts that I need to put down.
I went to church on Saturday. Oddly, the mass was centered around the concept of Faith, which I found strangely coincidental, based on my last blog post. The priest, at one point, quoted a line from a biography about the former U.S. president Jimmy Carter, summing up his views on faith;
"There is no final answer...Faith is a continual search".
I thought (I think) that these are prophetic words. And also very truthful. There IS no final answer. Perhaps that's the trouble modern humanity has with faith--we all desperately want answers, despite the fact that said answers may not be sure, true, real, or worthy. Just give us something to go on.
Something to go on is often, if you work at it, something you can create from within yourself.

I'm sitting at my sister's kitchen table, on New Year's Day, talking with my sister, exchanging thoughts, ideas, things that sisters do, conversations that sisters have. My four-year-old niece has finagled a chair at the table, quietly, wearing a party dress and a tiara in the middle of winter, her current idea of what it means to be female. She is picking at a muffin, her head turning back from my sister, to me, to my sister, back to me, as the conversation progresses like a tennis match, each person getting a chance to speak, to communicate. I catch her watching and she looks at me, returning my gaze with a slow smile.
I ask her, "Do you like listening to girl talk?"
She nods, sagely, shyly, seriously.
I touch her cheek, affectionately.
"One day you'll do your own girl talk".
Big smiles. This must be the part of girlhood, and future, eventual womanhood, she looks forward to, the way all girls do, the make up, the hair-care, the dresses, the tights.
Isn't that part of faith? The faith in the future, the faith OF the future, that it will come along, whether we want it to or not, life running along, with or without us, mostly with us, and even then, when it's without us, we're somewhere around, observing, listening, sending signs when we can, letting people know where we are.

I left an event today, and I headed back out into a snow-covered city, icy-cold, wind blowing from every direction. In the Spadina subway, a determined (cold!) busker was singing along to his guitar, a beautiful rendition of "Imagine" a song I always associate with death and sadness. (I had just left the viewing for a friend's father moments before). He sang the line, the tiles in the subway station wall reverberating the sound;
"Imagine there's no heaven, it's easy if you try. No hell below us, above us only sky.... Imagine all the for today..." It was as haunting as it is when I always hear that song and stubbornly respond to that line in my head---No; I can't imagine, and really, to me, that has nothing to do with living for today.

Because, as a favourite journalist of mine once wrote: "Living's the thing".

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