Complicated Grief: Loss of a Child

I don’t think it’s questionable to question. Although I do prefer answers to being antsy fancy pantsy without rhyme or reason or legitimate glitch. As they say “a glitch in time saves nine.” Oh, I think that’s supposed to be, “A stitch in time saves nine.” Well, it’s hard to knit here, and stitching things together here sometimes seems impossible.
[This is a re-blog of a re-blog or something — re-blog of a press this thing… anyway Doug’s intro comment was this
“This is from a site that initially took comments, but now their comment box is either broken or they are rejecting comments. There is no way to communicate when there is a glitch. “Invalid token” doesn’t really tell me anything. So anyway, I’m posting my comment here. The “press this” function is working so maybe someone else can attempt to comment by going to the link.”]

The Blog That Would Destroy the World

This Isn’t How Life Should Be… Loss is a normal part of life, if a difficult one. However, there are certain situations where loss is more complicated. One of the worst is the grief over loss of a child.  The death of a child seems wrong in many ways. They are too young, the parents …

Source: Complicated Grief: Loss of a Child

I would say that anthropomorphizing God or other Deity is a major problem. If a baby dies, will it spend eternity saying “Da,da, goo, goo.” Who would teach and raise its consciousness? Will it be raised and taught to be an Angel, or some other higher being? If it can not retain its form, what form will it take. What if it had lived and been raised by imperfect parents, experienced trauma, love, and joy — then it would have developed a particular personality. Different events, or…

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A Re-blog from JHIBlog: “The strange peregrination of a Latin noun: tribus from Italy to India”

By guest contributor Professor Sumit Guha

JHIBlog

By guest contributor Professor Sumit Guha

This essay addresses the shifting connection between signifier and signified, word and thing, by looking at the history of an important and yet so protean sociological term: ‘tribe’. My argument is that  ‘tribe’ is a ‘fossil word’ whose content has been replaced through centuries, just as a fossil’s soft tissue has been replaced by mineral compounds. In the process, it has changed to conform with the soil where it has lain. It is these shifts and their underlying discourses that I want to present in this post. In South Asia, the term was also in recent centuries permeated by traits based on the race theories of imperial-age Europe. It has therefore acquired a different connotation in the Republic of India than it has anywhere else. I begin however with its renewed presence in American public discourse now.

Tribes are in vogue (and even in…

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Goose vs Moose

{Hunting and butchering a moose is quite difficult. One is plenty for a day I would say. But somehow some early settlers wanted to brag that they bagged more than one. But to save face, they made the ambiguous plural, and no one was a liar. my short comment}– a re-blog here

irrelevance

One night I heard this song called English is Crazy (sung by Pete Seeger), and one of the many “crazy” things with the language he mentioned was goose and moose not being pluralized the same. I knew it was because moose was a loanword, but I was curious about the specifics (as well as rather ignorant).

Words like “goose” and “mouse” changed their vowel sound when you pluralize them (“geese” and “mice” respectively). This is pattern of vowel mutation is apparently common in the germanic languages (which do the same thing with verb tense, like with “swim” to “swum”) and originates with the original Saxon language from which old English evolved.

Words that use an “s” at the end to pluralize probably get that from the latin-derived Romance languages (French, Italian, etc.) which do that more consistently. For these languages, it is more common to have an unchanging word stem…

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“On Sand and Steps” by Douglas Gilbert

I’ve re-blogged this Poem from Doug’s Blog


On Sand and Steps

After hurricane Sandy
nothing felt real for me

She said to
turn off my flashlight
because the looters she knew
would know she left her apartment
if they saw her in my light

But I was clumsy in the dark
invisible and not real, not able
to keep blind rhythm masterfully
for unreal walking in the dark, and
I fell at the bottom of the stairs
flying like a fledgling on nested steps
catching my foot on an invisible edge

My thigh hurt from a pull
because I was unreal, ungraceful

I was without power
dark and hungry, looking for
hurricane charms.

None could wash away
Sandy sorrow and surges
when too many steps
needed to be taken urgently.

She used to find me charming
thought I was her good luck charm
but for a while now
I’ve just been used

Without power
dark and hungry
hurricane charms
were hard to find.

She knows everyone but me, and
I suppose I used to be charming

She needed to charge her phone
to talk to her real friends
in the real world

Seems that I, being unreal,
can’t see in the dark,
missed a step,
fell, and
we went to
charge her cell phone
near the security booth
where they hide guards
and do nothing, a light light
house like Potemkin’s façade

There was a generator at the booth
where she could charge her cell phone
talk to her real friends
in the real world

Unreal in the dark
without heat
without hot water
wet faces are not washed
dirty, filthy tides cry, but

I decided
the ocean is more beautiful
and magnificent than the mud
of the tidal marauders, and
the seagulls sang more sweetly
than the people on the street
as I wandered alone through debris
on the beach with flashlight on for me
watching a Dredge pipe spray
new sand for replenishment
new food for seagulls, and
food for thought that
wiggled like worms and clam bits

A few skillful birds caught
long pieces of food
and each had
five other birds attack it

A few snatched little pieces
that they ate surreptitiously

Some just enough
for air-to-air to beak combat

Many got none and
one stood away from
the main torrent of muddy water
not seeming to care
wading without waiting

I mumbled you’ll never
get anything that way

It barked at me

Why did you bark?
I blurted

If I chirped
would you pay attention?

It knew a good sand bar
so it flew and landed
flew and landed
so I could follow it

I walked across some rocks
onto a sand bar bizarre, and
an unopened bottle of whiskey
freely floated onto the bar to a stop

I poured some rye
into the whiskey’s cap
let the seagull drink
and wink at me as I
drank from the bottle

Foam rose
time to go

Alone with a thought
it seemed more articulate
than a parrot distraught; thus
it bravely rested on my shoulder
and I brought it home

I was so cold but
I lit the oven aglow
and put up some water
to boil, bravissimo

It asked me to open
cans of clams and sardines
which I gladly did, amen
seeing as I needed an ending
to the orphan joke: a man
walked into a bar along with
a barking seagull, a chirping dog
a priest, and the bartender spoke…

I thought I had been quite a good host
but then it asked if I could
charge its cell phone…

That’s when I cooked it.
It tasted like chicken in wine
blessed by a priest and a bartender.

She knew every storm but me, and
I suppose I was often a placid lake
but now I have angry ripples
and the tides will never seem the same

— Douglas Gilbert




Baby Carriage

Wind on her skin,
the sound of a seagull for her,
flying buzzing wonders, and
the glint in her eyes off the sea
I see

I name them for her in my baby voice
that purrs like a cat, sings like a mom does

days of baby and me,
an ocean of rushing love
not like a commuter train

better then ever this
maternity leave

baby take heed
we have this joy today
beached in love

Cooking Gyros For Swat Valley (February 2009)

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This is a re-blog of a post from Douglas Gilbert. It’s a poem about someone in exile working in a restaurant and thinking about home.
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The Blog That Would Destroy the World


Cooking Gyros For Swat Valley (February 2009)

We used to be
the Switzerland of Pakistan
many orchards
much fruit
much minding.

In my mind I see
the mulberry trees,
see much fruit, the
plum of the valley
minding apricots, damson
cracking walnuts like jewels
minding a fig leaf
a grape, the jujube
minding these and the olive tree
in my dreams of Swat Valley

We thought
like fruit flies
insurgents could be thwarted
could be swatted

In exile, my
restaurant work is a meditation
chopping lamb into chunks
into pieces, coalescing
thoughts for peace
charcoal broiled
hoping coalition forces will
bring a peace home, but I
am mashed chick peas
and tahini: the skeleton of
the sesame seed, fallen, my
kernel floated and crushed
feeling pasty, stuck in New York
rolling out an unfamiliar phyllo flat
with pistachios and honey sadness.

Oh the strutting about,
the grazing on tables where

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