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Life with Lavendar in London town

Friday, 11 November 2016

Leonard Cohen

Leonard Cohen is dead. 

He, along with Tom Waits are my favourite lyricists. I had the great fortune to see him in concert a few years back when he was forced to tour after being robbed of millions by his ex -manager. He was in his late 70s but you wouldn't have known it. The showmanship. The voice. It was perfection really, if you believe in such a thing.

He left a profound legacy. For me, he left words that never fail to illuminate the darkness.

Such as the words to his song, Anthem, which after Trunp's victory, resonate and... resonate.

The birds they sang at the break of day
Start again I heard them say
Don’t dwell on what has passed away
or what is yet to be.

Ah the wars they will be fought again
The holy dove she will be caught again
bought and sold  and bought again
the dove is never free.

Ring the bells that still can ring
Forget your perfect offering
There is a crack in everything
That’s how the light gets in.

We asked for signs the signs were sent:
the birth betrayed the marriage spent
Yeah the widowhood of every government –
signs for all to see.

I can’t run no more with that lawless crowd
while the killers in high places say their prayers out loud.
But they’ve summoned, they’ve summoned up a thundercloud
and they’re going to hear from me.

Ring the bells that still can ring …

You can add up the parts but you won’t have the sum
You can strike up the march, there is no drum
Every heart, every heart to love will come
but like a refugee.

Ring the bells that still can ring
Forget your perfect offering
There is a crack, a crack in everything

That’s how the light gets in.


Thursday, 10 November 2016

Donald Trump: President of the United States of America

What, the fuck?

Only time will reveal the consequences of this choice, not only for America but the world at large.

Some people I have spoken to are hopeful that it won't be that bad

Others are more despairing. The first American I encountered post result was masquerading as Canadian. Given the fact that the Canadian immigration website has crashed, it seems that it is the Mounties that need a big wall built to keep out the flood of US emigrants.

Hope is a good thing. Denial is not. There's a fine line between the two.

I sat with Dragon and we watched Trump's acceptance speech together.  I cried and she asked me why. I explained that I did not like him. I listed the reasons. Maybe I should not have explained sexism and racism to a young child who has had little exposure to these realities. Let her stay in her bubble for a little while longer.

It was not a normal morning though. And I have always tried to answer Dragon honestly, if appropriately, when she asks any question.

Later on that evening, we watched Hilary Clinton's concession speech together. I cried again. And then Dragon turned to me and said:

I wish I was white. That I had white skin.

There are moments in life when time stands still. This was one of them. The emotion I felt was cataclysmic.


Because Donald Trump is unkind to people who are not white.

Despair, regret, pain, fear, compassion, fortitude, anger, sadness. I cannot articulate how that moment felt.

The Western first world has changed and it will be Dragon's generation that bears the legacy of the decisions being made. I do not want her to grow up burdened. I do not want her to grow up unprepared.

I do not have the answers but I have no choice but to unravel my way through this maze we now face.

Courage. We will need it.