A dark, wet, cold day. A woman said as we were leaving the funeral event this afternoon, “The sky is weeping too.”
So, another shooting, another lunatic, another savage, horrendous waste of human life, this one anti-Semitic but no different than the ones destroying black children in church or people celebrating music and life anywhere. Forces of racism, hatred, and death have been unleashed in the United States and the world. We thought, with Obama’s election, that the world had fundamentally changed. Now we’ve turned over the rock and there it is, crawling out – the worst of humanity. Trump and his team, which includes Ontario’s current premier and the leader of the PC’s in Ottawa, beginning to attack the media in the same way. Dark dark dark.
And then I went to a memorial event for Ann Ireland, who was the writer/coordinator for the creative writing department at Ryerson. I worked with Ann for twenty years and received my last personal email from her at the end of July, about contracts. On August 8th, she wrote to us all that she was resigning because of a health crisis and would not reply to any emails or phone calls. She died less than three weeks later. Today, we heard that Ann chose assisted death; knowing her end was nigh due to terminal liver cancer, she arranged her final day with ten of her loved ones around her, and apparently said, “Wherever I’m going, I hope it’s not boring.”
According to one of her best friends, she also said, “Please tell people – in the end, work doesn’t matter. I’ve shredded two partial novels. What matters is love and family and friends and kindness.”
Thank you, Ann. I wish I’d known you better, but then, I always say that at funerals.
Out into the cold rain and home to more news about the dead in the synagogue. And then a text from my beloved daughter:
I’m so thankful today, Mum. I took this morning’s terrorist attack hard. But then we went to a double birthday party for some of Elijah’s friends. A Cameroonian couple and an Italian couple celebrating their beautiful daughters with our Tibetan, Cuban, Japanese, and Canadian friends. Grandparents, parents, kids of all colours playing together and having fun. Love will win. But we’re going to have to work for it.
Love will win. But we’re going to have to work for it.