Monday, June 15, 2020

A new week, a new day

Last evening Dave told me that I am always bad tempered these days.

I didn't argue, because he is probably right. When I say I worry I'll never see my Colorado girls again, Lux and Cece

and he says everyone has to accept that the world is different now, and air travel might never be what it was and we have to accept this, and there are lots of other people feeling upset, I do snap back like an angry crocodile.

But I need to be a sweeter person. I need to work harder at it in the place we are in right now, the new normal. While Dave has been even-tempered and patient for the last three months - Oh my God is it really three months we've been staying at home and avoiding the world? -  I have been swerving all over the place. Well, you know, because you've been reading the blog.

I apologised before bed, and promised to try to be a nicer person when we woke up. And Dave smiled because he is sweet and kind-hearted, and said:  'See you in the morning, if we're spared,' and I smiled, because even though he's said it a hundred times before, it still amuses me.

I slept well and woke up too early and picked up my iPad in the dark to see if there were any new episodes of my favourite programmes on BBC Sounds and found Poetry Please. Hooray! It hasn't been on since before the lockdown and I've needed it.

The first episode of the new series was hosted by Roger Robinson who wrote this poem, which I have permission to share with you, and have shared with you before:

A Portable Paradise 

And if I speak of Paradise,
then I’m speaking of my grandmother
who told me to carry it always
on my person, concealed, so
no one else would know but me.
That way they can’t steal it, she’d say.
And if life puts you under pressure,
trace its ridges in your pocket,
smell its piney scent on your handkerchief,
hum its anthem under your breath.
And if your stresses are sustained and daily,
get yourself to an empty room – be it hotel,
hostel or hovel – find a lamp
and empty your paradise onto a desk:
your white sands, green hills and fresh fish.
Shine the lamp on it like the fresh hope
of morning, and keep staring at it till you sleep.

Roger Robinson

© Roger Robinson, from A Portable Paradise, 2019. Used by permission of Peepal Tree Press.#

He chose some nourishing and thought provoking poems. My three favourites were:

Grace by Roger Robinson,  Fam by Caleb Femi - listen to it here  - and 
Eurofighter Typhoon by Fiona Benson.

I am trying to memorise the lines from Fam which go...

we mean we have to laugh, 
crying doesn't stop it from happening

Listening to poetry on the radio is a much nicer way to wake up than reading the news, so I was already feeling chipper when I checked my email and found this:

from the birthday girl. 

Love spans the miles. 

And here is the plate I painted at her Zoom pottery painting party on Saturday night:

Wishing you all a better week than the last one, and lots of love.


marmee said...

Oh dear Sue! I so so need to be better tempered ! My own husband said: you need to be friendlier! I have been resenting so having to be careful, not being able to go where I want to( my nearest national park , a mere 7 minutes drive away) is still closed to the general public! I resent having to worry when I go to the shop. Yes there a few online options but for general stuff the wait time is now over a month! I miss my exercise class! Some of us and the coach had been a group for over three years. NO I dont want to zoom! I have been wanting to stamp my feet , instead I snarl at the people I love . Woe is me!!

marmee said...

PS: thanks thanks for the poetry! Also: Do watch the movie Driveways if you can find it! It is a quiet little gem with not a word too much in it!

Sue Hepworth said...

Hi Marmee, so many women I have spoken to are feeling bad tempered. My Monday went well with not a smidge of bad temper and I have a tick mark on the calendar to show for it.
Thanks for the recommendation for Driveways. I will try to find it. x

Anita said...

Thanks so much for sharing the Roger Robinson poem - loved it.

Sue Hepworth said...

I’m glad you like it, Anita.
It’s in my file of ones to keep.