Monday, and it’s back to work. Of course the 09/12 is a reference to yesterday. The media was filled with memorials to those who lost their lives, reminiscences of those who survived, encomiums for heroic deeds, and efforts at putting the events of 09/11 into some form of historical context.
Except for two poignant posts, of growing up in the City with the towers as tuning forks for the soul’s landscape, and of the staggering immediacy of the actual events, both by Cayman Thorn on his cantankerously human blog Drinks Well With Others I avoided the entire exercise.
Instead, with the short amount of time I had to slap together a post I chose to find quiet and lose myself momentarily gazing upon a dreamily floating hot air balloon. It was Sunday after all.
Head in the sand-ism? Nothing of the sort.
Perspective only comes with the time and space to create it. It helps as well somehow or in some way to find higher ground from which to view things.
Whether they are upon the higher ground or not, at my elbow as I write this are works by Noam Chomsky, Gwynne Dwyer, Samuel Huntington, Gore Vidal and Howard Zinn. There’s Paul Kennedy, Joseph Stiglitz, Niall Ferguson, John Kenneth Galbraith, John Perkins, Chalmers Johnson, and Fareed Zakaria. Most on the left side of the spectrum, and few accessible through the mainstream media.
They relate a radically different narrative than the one put forth by CNN and the major networks.
I’ve stood at the foot of the towers and stared up in wonder at their dizzying immensity. They were marvels of ingenuity, audacity, and perhaps a dash or two of hubris.
And it is evident that in their jarring incongruity they played a commensurate role in the psychological makeup of millions and millions, in the City and to a lesser degree outside too. Plain and simply, they were a dominant feature of the landscape, physical, and psycho-spiritual.
Did the world change that fateful day, as is commonly held? Unquestionably, it did for the millions who’s landscape, both outer and inner, was inexorably altered.
But Life flows on. A crime against innocent people was perpetrated, and if we were to examine events with unbiassed hearts, I wouldn’t be surprised if over the last ten years the events of 09/11 were repaid upon other innocents a thousand fold, nay three thousand, for every life lost in the towers.
A poet once said “There is no good or bad but that the mind makes it so.” We are all innocent… and we are all guilty.
This world, right here and right now, is all we have. It is filled with wonders and it is precious and to my thinking deserving of constant celebration and thanksgiving.
Challenges aplenty lie ahead, and tragedies move us deeply the more human we become.
But this life, your’s and mine, is the greatest gift there can ever be. Let us not squander it.
Good night, and happy dreams.