Saturday, December 15, 2012

Of Beauty and the Beastly Acts of Man

Sandhill crane. Landlubber grasshopper. Shoelace fern.

It has been a month since we arrived at our winter home in North Fort Myers and we've spent considerable time on nearby trails and swamp boardwalks re-acquainting ourselves with familiar friends and meeting new ones like the tree frog who has taken up residence in the palm tree near our lanai and who sings us to sleep every warm night.  Now there's a gentle lullaby to lull you to sleep.

But last night, sleep was hard to come by.  Like the rest of the nation, including our President, Americans far and wide are mourning the deaths of so many innocent school children in yet another senseless killing spree.  As I read my husband the news this morning, I had to stop several times to fight off the tears.  And ever since we learned of the atrocity, thinking about those families, teachers, coaches, and community members who knew and loved those children, I have been asking myself all day: How many bullet-ridden bodies have to be buried buried before our leaders find the political will to fend off the gun lobby and put an end to the murdering?

I've heard from many friends who are asking the same question -- and who are taking action by writing their representatives and President Obama to demand a change in America's gun laws.  I've begun my own campaign, starting at the top: with a letter to the President.  After I finish here, next up will be letters to my senators and congresswoman.  No more slaughter.  No more.

And I'm writing this blog posting in hopes that you will do the same.

There is so much beauty in this world, like the male sandhill crane performing his ritual mating dance in the photograph at the top of this page. His beautiful tango of love helps soothe my anguished spirit, but it not enough, not nearly enough.  I must do more.  You must do more.

Thank you.  I'll be back soon with another post, a cheerier one no doubt, to comment on Roger's and my expedition into the Everglades, my holy land, beginning tomorrow morning and continuing for several days of hiking, poetry-writing, simply being together.  Let the healing begin.