You would never have guessed what has happened over the last 16 years. The world has exploded with information. All those newspaper articles and poems you so carefully cut out and saved to have access to those words again? They’re everywhere, at your fingertips is the most amazing tool and it is so much faster than it was. There are more poems within my reach in less than a second than you could possibly comprehend. It’s beautiful and you would love it. But, there’s a strange thing that came with it, which is why I’m writing to you. I’m not reading the poems. I forgot to read a poem, any poem, even one.
The information, the options, the vastness of the content is really hard to navigate. My generation is suffering immensely. We are drowning in self-doubt, guilt, overwhelm, decision fatigue, anxiety, depression, options, stuff, busyness, stress and we are so very divided…the list is long. And our kids, Grandma, these beautiful boys of mine you didn’t get to meet, they can feel it too, both in their own lives and through me. And, it is shaking them, they’re losing their sense of self, their confidence, their peace too. The irritation, anger, yelling, frustration, short temper, deep sadness, and anxious mom I became, we’ve become, is beyond the bad day you’re envisioning that I’m talking about. We’ve been pushed past our breaking points and are living day to day there, in overwhelm. It’s all moving too fast, there’s too much, we can’t keep up.
I miss the moments I remember from my childhood with you, the slow pace of sitting in the present. My kids need memories like that. Memories of sitting on the front step shelling peas from the garden. So many peas! At the time it was annoying, it was hot and my little fingers were slimed with green (in that way that smearing a dandelion on your skin briefly makes you wonder if your skin will stay that colour) and I wanted to go play. But, there was magic in that moment. The world was slowed, we had a task and we were together. We shared that moment.
This is what my generation has lost and what I need your help with. I need an anchor in the past to help me explore these waters without getting too far out to sea. Untethered was a scary place. So, I’ve come back to you and what you showed me, taught me, modelled for me. I’m setting out again. But, this time, holding on to the past, a simpler way. And, I’ll go a bit slower.
A world with an unimaginable number of poems at my fingertips means nothing if I don’t read one.
Nothing Gold Can Stay
Nature’s first green is gold,
Her hardest hue to hold.
Her early leaf’s a flower;
But only so an hour.
Then leaf subsides to leaf.
So Eden sank to grief,
So dawn goes down to day.
Nothing gold can stay.
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