No, this isn’t about the music from Fiddler on the Roof. (Which incidentally, is one of the few Broadway plays my parents took me to as a kid. My father had taken some art classes with Zero Mostel and Zero graciously invited our family backstage. I loved the play and enjoyed meeting the first famous person I had ever met. But I digress.)
After yesterday’s justifiable and necessary outrage, I needed to take some deep breaths and see if I could arrive at a more hopeful state of mind. I do feel like the extremities of these reactions by scared people trained to project their fear outwards is the last gasp of a dying breed, a mentality that has no place in a future that is not only sustainable, and kinder and more intelligent, but is an actual future for the human species. We are in indeed, as poet Matthew Arnold puts it, “wandering between two worlds , one dead, the other powerless to be born.” In the best scenario, we will bury the dead and turn our power to the living.
So one poetic image is the sunset of the previous world (much more beautiful and gentle than what is actually happening) and the sunrise of the one we hope to welcome. So I’ll let these two images speak for themselves, the first a sunset from Spreckel’s Lake in San Francisco’s Golden Gate Park (actually taken on New Year’s Eve) and the second a sunrise from the West Point Inn on Mt. Tam in Marin (the same place the “cover” photo of this blog shows). Let these images guide us forward.