They didn’t wait long…the new goverment’s approach to change and some people’s enthusiastic participation should fill us all with foreboding for what is to come. As the Independent’s article states “…the first act of ethnic cleansing in the new Italy passed off with little fuss.” Well, maybe that’s something of an exaggeration as the media is all hyped up about it. But inside even my closest sphere of folks, the atrocity is viewed sympathetically, as though the alleged kidnapping of a child by one individual, or years of irritating theft and beggary warrant the incredible physical and psychological violence of bombing people’s homes, risking dreadful harm and death to the victims as well as the devastation of what little material possesions they have with which to anchor their emotional lives to this earth. Their HOMES.

I watched a lot of television while I was laid out flat for two months or so, and the unveiled hostility towards people with leftist politics and immigrants with or without residency is terrible. And I consider myself jaded. The bombardment of viewers with images that bear no relation to what is being said, combined with inflammatory remarks should make folks laugh with disdain at such callous attempts of manipulation, but instead it seems to find a sympathetic and even eager audience. Like the population has been waiting, thirsting for someone to make public our darkest and ugliest thoughts and feelings. To bless our fear and anger and sanction violence in all its forms as the only possible solution to remedy our worst weaknesses.

Fear is so much at the root of it. Fear of differences, fear of change, fear of the unknown. I am not one to try to dismiss these fears; I see Italy as being fully engaged in a cultural revolution of enormous proportions and change on that scale cannot be but frightening. And what is happening here is but a microcosm of the world. My struggle though is to not to succumb to my fear, to not allow myself to be manipulated by those who have means to gain from my fear. I am trying to see beyond what frightens me, to understand where my fear comes from, what circumstances surround it, what the other aspects are involved. Only then is there the possibility to find the correct path, the just and peaceful actions that will help us all adjust to the changes now overwhelming us. To act in fear is to give up hope, to stop believing that life is beautiful, to condemn humanity to behavior that can only be reactive rather than proactive.

My beets that sprouted early in the Spring died because we forgot to water them. I was sort of down about this as I had chosen them as my metaphor for a fragile but tenacious hope. I planted seeds again, and I have three pots of beets on the balcony now. But I didn’t take a photo of them today because I think my perennial strawberries make for a better analogy. Make what you will of the analogy/metaphor, maybe you like that they continue year after year, or the startling fruit they make that seems so out of character with the humble greenery, or the runners each plant sends out in search of fertile soil which will then make a new plant… probably there are other helpful behaviors that strawberries engage in. I am too tired to write them out for you.

Originally uploaded by nonsonoitaliana



One Response to “strawberries”

  1. alix Travis Says:

    Beautiful essay. Daddy says the world is in one of those spasms of reaction or “fear”.

    Love, mother

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: