Just bitchin'

A Different Kind of 4th

blog4th1

I live on the beach, so the 4th of July is usually a noisy, colorful celebration that sparkles across the night sky from sundown to midnight, with a few inebriated revelers lurching about until dawn, setting off the occasional Roman candle just to keep the rest of us on our toes.

Not so this year.

Extreme fire danger prompted authorities to ban fireworks.

Bans rarely enjoy unanimous compliance here. Especially on the 4th of July. I mean, in a country that treasures individual freedom above all else…a nation based on rebellion…you think we’re going to do as we’re told on the very holiday that honors revolution?

Naaaaah.

But this year was different.

The fireworks displays were fewer and farther between. Instead of sitting on my beach, feeling the ground reverberate, hearing my windows rattle, and keeping a hose handy for the vagrant sparks the wind would fan my way…instead of all that, I listened to quiet voices in the dark.

I listened to an elderly gentleman tell the story of the American Revolution to grandchildren who weren’t distracted by pyrotechnics.

I watched a young father raise his daughter to his shoulders and point out the dazzling constellations that glittered overhead in a crystal clear sky.

I heard someone whisper ‘We’re so lucky to live here.’

And I have to agree.

Happy Birthday, America.

Thank you for taking my people in, so I could call you ‘home.’

blog4th2

Advertisements
Standard
Just bitchin', poem

Letter to the Ghost of Osama Bin Laden

World-Trade-Center-9-11-cross-1

The page has turned.

Another anniversary.

There is a qualitative difference this time around. Previous years were rife with remembrance. Sharp shards of unavoidable history.

But this year, I was hard-pressed to find them. What had previously been a deluge, now a trickle.

Maybe it’s me.

With the extraordinary adaptability of the human animal, I have subsumed you into daily life, feeling not terror, but wariness.

Such a lukewarm legacy. Was it worth it?

I see no time when our beliefs and cultures will mesh.

Enemies eternal. A common view, me and you. I bet it bothers you to share something, anything with the likes of me.

Like children in a schoolyard; one offering his lunch money, eager to make friends, form bonds, buy them if he has to. A little desperate to be liked.

The other filled with nameless rage and bared teeth, hating those whose very existence he feels invalidates his own. Acting out.

You envisioned a roar, but left only an echo.

Part of it is the passage of time.

But most of it is because I love my country with a ferocity that surpasses your fanaticism.

We’re still here.

wtcmemorial

Standard