Now day is Breaking
Night is ended and the moon
melts in the open sky,
sets in the canals.
September is so alive in this land
of plains, the meadows green
as in southern valleys in spring.
I have left my friends,
hidden my heart inside the ageing walls
to remain alone while I remember you.
How remoter than the moon you are
the day now breaking
and hooves of horses clattering on the stones.
Salvatore Quasimodo (1901-1968)
Translated from Italian by Jack Bevan
-Theodore Roosevelt Sr.
I’ve been watching a Ken Burns film called, “The Roosevelts, an intimate History”, airing episodically on PBS right now-a great watch if you have cable and spare time! It’s been helping lift me out of dark places. This motto spoken often by Teddy Roosevelt has especially stuck.
Sometimes when I’m wearing my lonely sweater, I find a loose thread, that if I tug to hard would unravel me. Leaving nothing but an exposed, raw, fleshy, human. King Lear on the Heath comes immediately to mind (and I am reminded why I still gravitate to this play after so many years). There is a fear of being naked, a fear of the simplicity of insanity. A word we build walls around; a word we keep confined with diagnoses & prescription pills. We dare not let that wild, anarchic beast within us escape.
It could be said, that Theodore Roosevelt balanced on the verge of greatness and great ruin. A man with demons; a man who had to keep running for fear of what might happen if he stood stagnant. To do IS to be sane. ˆSanity is simply the absence of a lonely mind left to wander without a compass.
So, instead, of unraveling myself, and indulging in that self-inflicted suffering that artists seem so fond of, I take my hands off my sweater de loneliness and live the next moment, and then the next, and in those moments, I do things like call a friend, and go to the grocery store, and find something still to laugh at, because good God, life is CRAZY, and insanity, while strange and dark is also perhaps the funniest of all.