thoughtsfromthepanda

I do my best thinking while driving. I drive a Fiat Panda.

Archive for the tag “fragile”

So fragile are we all

When Reeva Steenkamp died, almost one month ago now, I was playing a Sting album in the Panda as my ‘album of the week’ – my usual driving strategy is to switch over to music when the news just gets unbearable. I nearly crashed the car when I heard the news that morning. Later, when I was still digesting the first snippets of the terrible story, along with the rest of South Africa, I changed over as usual to my music, to think for a while.

Unexpectedly, I found Sting’s inadvertent commentary in the song that played next.

How appropriate his words are here. Startlingly so, I think.

A heartbreaking footnote to a tragedy that has ruined so many lives.

A mourning song for all of us crying for another lost hero who was unable to bear the burden of being ‘super’ all the time; another woman in South Africa whose light has been put out prematurely; who has been lost forever to the shameful violence of our times.

Simply tragic.

As Sting says: “How fragile we are.”

Even those with the guns. Especially those with the guns?

Lest we forget.

 

Here are the words to ‘Fragile’ by Sting (with a link to a performance below)

StingFragile 

If blood will flow when flesh and steel are one
Drying in the colour of the evening sun
Tomorrow’s rain will wash the stains away
But something in our minds will always stay

Perhaps this final act was meant
To clinch a lifetime’s argument
That nothing comes from violence and nothing ever could

For all those born beneath an angry star
Lest we forget how fragile we are

On and on the rain will fall
Like tears from a star
Like tears from a star
On and on the rain will say
How fragile we are
How fragile we are

On and on the rain will fall
Like tears from a star
Like tears from a star
On and on the rain will say
How fragile we are
How fragile we are
How fragile we are
How fragile we are

Here is Sting in Berlin.

 

Sad footnote:

If blood will flow when flesh and steel are one”

How do I tell this story to my children who revered Oscar during the Olympics; who looked for him and cheered and clapped for him – because he was South African; because he was ‘The Blade Runner’; because in their minds he was differently-abled and not disabled? How do I tell them why he is in the media now when they don’t even know the meaning of the word ‘murder’?

I have decided that for now they are too young to know.

I wish I was too.

 

Final (trying to be less sad) footnote:

This is why we have our artists and musicians: sometimes they bring wisdom, sometimes comfort, sometimes both. I would hope most people think this includes our writers too…

 

Final final final footnote:

This was a very hard one to publish. It has taken me a long time.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Heart sore

Dear Blog.

Nice to be back.

Sadly, I am not my usual ‘every cloud has a silver lining/the glass is half-full/I can do this; yes I can’ self today. (Sorry President Obama, you actually didn’t invent that last one; you just globalised it, and good on you by the way and yes, I’m a fan, but just for the record I was there all by myself with the Yes One Can scenario like I said.)

I digress.

Today I am heart sore.

I am heart sore for a few reasons.

Where to start.

I am heart sore today because.

Amongst others.

Not a completely comprehensive list.

Because my father is so fragile now.

Because of the Oscar Pistorius ‘fallen hero’ desperate, desperate story that has been invading us through the media for nearly two weeks now. So many lives ruined. So, so many. So much human sorrow encapsulated in the bitter story of this fallen demi-god.

Because my father is so fragile now.

Because little Layla died a week ago, despite so much love and hope and optimism and energy and goodwill that got poured into her brave, wonderful mother’s ‘Love for Layla’ campaign’ and the bravery of the little girl herself. And their family, and the community at large.

Because my father is so fragile now.

Because little Adam’s  condition is unlikely to improve significantly unless stem cell research and miracles come together super-fast, like, oh, say, no really – super fast.

Because my father is so fragile now.

Because of the children – yes, children – who are raped and stabbed and left for dead and outright murdered in South Africa every day. Male and female, birth to teens. Cry, the beloved country. Cry. For shame.

Because my father is so fragile now.

Because of the corruption and ineptitude that seems to be endemic around us at the moment. For shame, I say again. For shame

Because my father is so fragile now.

Because today I am not in my twenties and I now know I am not invincible.

Because sorrow has etched its way across my heart.

Because I can’t fix it.

Any of it.

None at all.

I will look for silver linings again tomorrow. Today, I am heart sore.

Because my father is so fragile now.

And because my mother is so brave.

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