Saturday, 28 January 2017

Trump: Still Hoping for the Best?




I know some of my online (and real-life) friends want to hope for the best, that despite hate speech and aggression in his tone, Donald Trump will succeed in bringing good things to America and the world. I understand this need for hope and optimism, for the need to believe that a person who says something in a way you would not can still mean to do good, that intentions are more important than the way something is said.

If someone speaks to you in anger, or hate, or ignorance, you might react or you might try to turn from them to avoid conflict. You might 'turn the other cheek' and hope that your example of loving forbearance helps them see there is a better way.

But if they keep responding in anger, hate or ignorance, and are emboldened by you turning, not speaking - or even by your angry, hurt response - you have to question your own motives first, and theirs second.

What do you hope to gain by giving the benefit of the doubt over and over? Why would a person so full of vengeance and hate want to do good in the world? Will it happen by accident? Will it happen because of good people working beneath them? Will it happen because this person is just bad at expressing themselves and still means to do good things?

How many times would you need to be hurt before accepting someone wants to hurt you? How many times must a person be slapped before they realise the other means them harm? And if not you, how many times must they hurt another before you recognise that a good person does not act this way?

It is no good facing the other way when a fire is burning behind you – not being able to see the fire does not stop it burning and is more likely to end in you being burnt yourself.
Somewhere there is another version of you, feeling the same emotions when they look at their family, touching the cheek of a child, hoping for the best, but they cannot turn away from the fire because it is already at their door.
Look right at the words used, the actions, the effects on people - real, human people going about their lives just like you are.
React with love if you must, believe the best if you like, but do not look the other way. Hope for the best but keep your eyes wide open while you do it.

© Amanda J Harrington 2016


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Wednesday, 25 January 2017

Dark Waters



They watched the waters close over the heads of their enemies.
The new friend, eyes still on the tops of their dark, sodden hair, said,
What would we have done without the water?
Shrugging, already bored, his old friend replied,

The water was always there, just as it is,
deep, black, unfathomable.
We only used it as we saw fit.
There is always water, always death.
The living belongs to men like us who know how to keep it.

They sank slowly though, their stubborn heads visible in the darkness,
the gleaming faces lit longer than they deserved by the moon which fed them.
And later, when finally they could not be seen, he felt them there and
did not dare leave the water-side in case they came clambering back out,
grabbing for him with hands greased and hungry.

His old friend slept soundly without dreaming, untroubled by the moon.

© Amanda J Harrington 2016


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And my fairy blog

Sunday, 1 January 2017

Light in the dark times



I thought the lights had gone out on the Christmas tree, until now, in the dark, I saw them blinking faintly. They hadn't gone out, not completely, it just wasn't dark enough to see them.

Their batteries are almost flat, I couldn't see them in daylight, or even twilight, and the other times when I've switched everything off in the evening, I hadn't paused before leaving the room. Tonight I did, and there they were, faithfully twinkling, catching the barest edges of the tinsel. The shape of the tree was a very small, very me constellation, the lights forming a suggestion of a tree, the idea behind a tree, only visible on this darkest night.

It's been a year when my own lights have flickered bravely against the dark, and this holiday season has seen me at my lowest ebb for a long while. I have done my best, readers, tried to be the right me for the season, the sort of me I used to be, the Christmas version of me that everyone is used to and expects.

Like the lights, I've found it hard to make myself visible, have felt I didn't have the energy to shine out. I thought I was doing very badly.

Now, I think, I could be my own very small constellation too. If I can't shine as expected, or when I need to, maybe I could shine just enough to make the outline of me, the suggestion of me against the dark night. Each tiny light could be flickering so you wonder if you imagine it, until you suddenly see the full shape and know it.

We flicker in life, we change all the time from full sun to clouded star. We can only do what we are capable of at any one time, and sometimes have to be content with keeping our little lights alive in the darkness.

Still, even if they are small, and we feel they may blink out, let's see each one as the tiniest star that goes towards making the whole of us. Sometimes we don't see ourselves at all, it takes another person to pause at the right moment and see us there, bravely shining in the night.

I stood in the dark room and looked at the tree, noticed the shape, the glinting tinsel, the way the baubles tried to glimmer in the tiny amount of light they were given. I thought of Christmas, and of everything, then left the dark room still dimly-lit by the lights I wrapped round and round at the beginning.

The tree stands, the lights stand with it, and the whole of it belongs to a feeling that the dark nights in the middle of winter can be borne if only we have the ability to light them and perhaps a little help to keep them shining.

© Amanda J Harrington 2016


My books on Amazon
My own website for books and tuition


Find me on Facebook and Twitter!


Read my Aspergers blog
And my fairy blog

A story somewhere