Showing posts with label COVID-Vivid. Show all posts
Showing posts with label COVID-Vivid. Show all posts

Saturday, December 18, 2021

in sight

the blizzard blooms 
in afternoon sun 
windows burn

but not the tree-line 
held in my mouth
like t e e t h  

unraveling the bridges
they can reach 
like breath

answering the songs
of late at night
dog choirs

we cannot yet speak of  
how meaning carries
across    species

I begin to see in silence 
how I understand
no thing

---------------------------------------------------------------
Pic: Surprise snow overnight--on cue for Nu's first day of Christmas break. 
Notes: We're rethinking traveling between Christmas and New Year to see grandparents. And there are rumors that school may be online in the new year. (And yes, someone forgot to bring summer's pillows in again.)

Sunday, December 12, 2021

"an ill wind"

Behold the deceptively calm beginning to a messy weekend. 

Yesterday started out at 56° and was supposed to drop 20° over the course of the day, so L and I went down the Red Cedar early despite the wind advisory. The gusts were intense and at one point we thought we were going to get swept into the river. And then we got rained on and sleeted on although there was nothing about that in the weather forecast. 

I planned a hot shower as soon as I got home, but first there was kids' breakfasts and then something else came up and before I knew it, the power went out. I paid for my delay with a dry shampoo and an ice-cold shower before the water cut off. And although I got gussied up, as I already lamented, I didn't get to see Hadestown.

The wind brought mayhem to Hagadorn--signs, traffic lights, and electricity poles were down--like on the ground. BWL said power would come back at 8:15 yesterday, and when it didn't we shrugged and got some extra blankets and cuddled up with warm puppies. All night long I could hear utility vehicles and sirens and workers (bless them). 

Big A's off for a series of job interviews, and wanted us to go to a hotel, and I was making arrangements for At to house Nu for a bit, but the power thankfully came back in the evening. I'm freshly showered and can finally feel my fingers and toes again. 

Saturday, December 11, 2021

a sad story without pictures

Pictured: Here's me at 1:00 pm all ready to go see Hadestown at 2:00 pm, just waiting for Nu and Big A to get their coats on so we can all walk over to the Wharton.

Not pictured: me at 1:15 when Nu and Big A decided it was too cold to walk and that we should turn around and take the car instead.

Also not pictured: me at 1:20 when we collectively realized that the reason we hadn't had power since 11 am or thereabouts was because there was a downed wire across our street. Also realizing this made it impassable for us to get to the Wharton.

Also not pictured: me at 1:25 begging Nu and Big A to walk to the show through the church grounds.

Also not pictured: me at 1:30 begging them to let me go to the show by myself at least.

Also not pictured: L and T trying to help me find my way--blocked at every turn by police and utility vehicles (if not by downed wires).

Also not pictured: me at 1:53 giving up.

Friday, December 10, 2021

"It's beginning to look a lot like..."


The first holiday cards of the season have started to arrive. I guess it's time to put away the cards I've had on display from last year now?

But seriously, it was lovely having this display up by the family altar all this last year... cards would randomly slip out of place and give me the pleasure of retrieving and reading them all over again.

Not exaggerating when I say they helped to keep me going in 2021.

Tuesday, December 07, 2021

"love's the only engine of survival"


All I have in my camera roll for today is this cluster of birches right outside the horticultural gardens getting ready to weather winter...

But they evoke for me a reminder that we started family therapy today. Our goals are to be better parents, help Nu feel like they can come to us with anything, feel supported in their gender transition, and not run scams on their schoolwork.  

It was just me and Nu today as Big A is working in the faraway place. Our therapist is insightful and wonderful. Nu was honest and articulate and I was so proud of them. I really couldn't have asked for a better first (telehealth) session.


Sunday, December 05, 2021

the week that was

 


and I didn't have the energy to say anything 
since it was also
the last week of classes
the first week of Big A's new job
and so it goes.

I must note that Oxford, MI, the latest in the annals of school shootings, is an hour from us. I keep feeling lost after Parkland or after Sandy Hook when I kept the kids home until I had to send them back in the new year. And I'm realizing I've done this with varying intensity for the entire span of my children's public school lives.

Saturday, December 04, 2021

my eyes are... out here?

Vulvae and "no one needs a douche" stickers from my student's WGS symposium station this week. 💓

Today, I spent the morning interviewing students for scholarships and...

It was demoralizing that a couple of potential students with great GPAs, neurotypical presentation,  pre-med intentions... just wouldn't make eye-contact with me. 

And I understand these are teenagers who've spent close to two years mostly seeing people virtually or masked, but this was not about that.

I interviewed with a (male, white) colleague, and at every question, even if I had been the one who asked the question, they'd look earnestly at my colleague while they answered. One student who was otherwise equitable at dividing their time between interviewers, focussed solely on my colleague while describing their football success. 

I checked with my colleague to see if he had noticed it too--and he had. He said he'd tried to look at me while they were answering to model etiquette. (To no avail, apparently.)

I guess I'm lucky this doesn't happen all the time, but c'mon kids!

Friday, December 03, 2021

"both sides now"


I found this on the internets and what a perfect way to mark this last day of class... for the term... for the year... for the academic year, in my case. (I mean I start with an 8:45 am meeting tomorrow and will interview students for scholarships on Saturday, also starting at 8:45 am, but...)

I remember a school teacher friend in YS announcing that they would be turning off their morning alarm for the next three months. I won't--I'll still wake up at 4:30/5:00 alarm or no, but counting my sabbatical and summer, I won't be in a classroom until September of 2022.

And of course, all that self-congratulation aside, I know I will miss the high of being in the classroom. My students did SUCH MAGNIFICENT work on their WGS symposium work today and everyone who visited loved it too. And there were student visitors who were disappointed that the course wouldn't be offered next term and their interest made me sad I wasn't going to be teaching next term... 

So... you know, like the date, the day went both ways. 

And apparently, we're in for a week+ stretch of palindrome days.

Wednesday, December 01, 2021

"one is a lonely number"


Big A is far away and I'm sitting here at midnight, anxious and sad... 

But I'm not gonna lie--the day was glorious. It's been SO LONG since I had the house to myself and though it was mostly grading and work and meetings and LORs, it felt luxurious. 

It's in the details and small tweaks to the day... like planning to have lox for dinner with Nu. Somehow it's Big A with his Jewish heritage who can't stand lox, while Nu and I LOVE it.

Speaking of my human kids--it's difficult parenting one at a time. Kind of lonely, actually. I had eight years with At before Nu came along, and now that At is 22 and in his own place, I get these years to focus fully on Nu. I keep telling myself this, but both Nu and I miss At and I don't think Nu likes being the sole focus. Ha. 

At least the puppy kids are accommodating and making pillow forts forever.

Tuesday, November 30, 2021

anew

A new Nu... or a new hairdo.

They found this particular style by googling "emo boy hair." I think Nu makes it look great! Big A took them to the Aveda Salon--I bristled at that since I go to Supercuts. 

But I had a long day at work, and Big A took care of Nu's salon trip, and eyeglasses prescription, and picked up Subway for dinner. So it's all good.

 Big A starts a new job tomorrow--it's not as far away as Texas as I feared, but still a pretty long commute.

Friday, November 26, 2021

post-prandial

Went on a hike with Big A while the grandparents hung out with Nu, Scout, and Huck. We headed to Baker Woods and weren't gone very long, but we were the only ones there and it felt like a different world. 

Later, we packed up the grandparents with snacks, cider, and one of the flower arrangements from yesterday's table, and waved our goodbyes as they headed back to Ohio. 

Then a long soak with Big A, a great heart-to-heart with Nu, + snacks + old sitcoms + naps.  

It was the perfect chaser to yesterday.
 

Wednesday, November 24, 2021

in the news (and not in a good way)

 




Today was a lovely scramble to finish early prep for the feast tomorrow, welcoming grandparents and a bonus puppy, and day-drinking + eating cake (Big A's citrusy-pistachio masterpiece) for breakfast and lunch.

I'm thankful this isn't last year. 

But as a colleague's tweet reminds me, some of that is just my/our ennui and exhaustion with the pandemic and things aren't really going so well. 

Our state leads the nation in new cases and the lede photo for this NYT article, about the morphing re-formations of the pandemic, is from our local hospital system.

Saturday, November 20, 2021

tradeoff

 


I missed an important deadline and the candlesticks I'd planned to use for the Thanksgiving table broke, but I spent a lot of time snuggled up like this...

(Scout can't jump up onto the sofa as he once could, but Big A picks him up and places him on my feet.)



Friday, November 19, 2021

Karthika Deepam In Michigan

So I got my own lights festival after all 😁. KB drove down from Alma and took me to see the tree lighting downtown. Huge crowds everywhere, a lovely full moon, a lit up capitol building, a sparkly nondenominational tree, and holographic fireworks.

I'd been panicking on what to do about dinner since I would get home after five, but Big A stepped up and made his amazing Brazilian seafood soup and his famous tapioca pao and then Kate brought homemade chocolate macarons (with cardamom! because I'm Indian!) and we feasted.

I know some very good people. And they make delicious things.
 

Thursday, November 18, 2021

pooja-fun

I'm heartsore I cannot be in Pondycherry ("is it full of ponds and cherries?" baby cousin A asked once) tomorrow. 

The pooja is tomorrow, but I bet everyone's already assembling now--finding empty bedrooms, screeching helloes, making plans, and having so much fun for Kartika. As Big A reminded me so helpfully yesterday, it is unlikely that I will ever be able to be at Kartika pooja because it's such a busy time in the academic year. 

We usually did the big festivals like Diwali and Pongal at home or with the other side of the family, but the November full moon festival was always the big event for all the cousins on my mom's side. For many years after I came to the U.S., my favorite aunt would sweetly save the turmeric-soaked wristlets for me to pick up on my next trip home, but I haven't been back in years at this point. The nostalgia is hitting hard this year.

Baby cousin B has been sending pictures on cousin chat to keep me in the loop. This picture has so many of my favorite things--the sea, the little Ganesha temple, the tulsi maadam, the new swimming pool, the effortless green everywhere... Gah. I just wish I could be there for at least 24 hours.

Saturday, November 13, 2021

going on goings on

don't separate me from what I remember
for I sin against completion 
I say I want want so much from this life 
and yet I keep giving it away  

my mom said she found a college friend 
from forty years ago on Facebook
she's a bit proud and shy telling me how
because it's detective shit/stalking

my sister gamely practices a funny line 
from a cartoon only I have seen
we bounce it between us: "back to you"
laughter shimmers in our mouths 

in the richness of boredom I'm dissolving
into blessings, learning lessons
of normalcy, finding myself in some stories 
I've braided out of ordinariness

Thursday, November 11, 2021

the elders are (al)right


Took the Cosmopolitanism class to Ziibiwing Center this afternoon; got to chat to Mr. Roy who's given several of my classes the grand tour before. I wasn't able to arrange one this time, but he gave us a short tour anyway. 

The class was standing around, feeling a little out of depth, and Mr. Roy reminded us that the people were Anishnaabe and the language Anishnaabemowin and showed us how everything was titled in Anishnaabemowin and also in English. And then... he taught us to pronounce a word, making us repeat after him: "eh ggzhi bit... now say it all together." And everyone dutifully pronounced it: "exhibit." Ha. It wasn't possible to be stiff after that. 

I noted how people fell silent around the boarding schools exhibit and were startled by the clay people... and then we had some great conversations on our way back to the college. And we got our basketballer to their game on time too.

Saturday, November 06, 2021

back story

ripples eddy me round like
an island, like a knot
greedy with fear

in this drift of a year I may
examine one reed then
inherit a whole river

I will no longer burn into 
everything--it holds me
back, turning

into the story of one bird
perched on my hand
forever telling me

I am here--yes, I am here
have been for so long
always singing 

Thursday, November 04, 2021

honors


A lovely and successful honorary induction and such a thrill to celebrate in person with a community of like-minded book nerds again. 

Lots of pictures with students and their families for my imminent Goodbye Mr. Chips years, and lots of ziplock bags so students could take the extra hors d'oeuvres with them.

But it leaves me with less than ten hours to commute home and get back to campus for my 8 am meeting in the morning... zzzzzzzzzzzzzz

Saturday, October 30, 2021

tight/rope

I like how fear shapes itself
the moment before thought 
startling inching shaking
me alive

In the throb of this time
so borderless and so big
bruising every impulse 
to be here