Thursday, June 11, 2009

Poem for Thursday

The Girl
By Marie Howe

So close to the end of my childbearing life
without children

if I could remember a day when I was utterly a girl
and not yet a woman –

but I don't think there was a day like that for me.

When I look at the girl I was, dripping in her bathing suit,
or riding her bike, pumping hard down the newly paved street,

She wears a furtive look –
and even if I could go back in time to her as me, the age I am now

she would never come into my arms
without believing that I wanted something.


Daniel started final exams on Wednesday morning, meaning I had to pick him up before lunch after his tests were over. In the afternoon, we had our final rehearsal for the Bar Mitzvah, interrupted several times by phone calls for the rabbi by various news organizations wanting quotes about the Holocaust Museum shooting. It was a very scattered, sad rehearsal, and I am nervous now about the event, which I wasn't before, considering that both kids have only read from the Haftarah scroll without vowels twice, and both did some stumbling.

After the rehearsal, we stopped at the restaurant to drop off menu and seating information, then we went to Tara Thai for dinner since it was already nearly 7 p.m. (we joked that it was the rehearsal dinner). Then we watched last night's Stewart/Colbert -- Clinton Apology, "Up Where We Belong" -- and, later, tonight's -- Napoleon, the Joe Biden of Iraq. Because I do believe we are fated to repeat history if we do not remember it, here are photos from the reenactment of the Battle of Cold Harbor in Richmond last weekend:

Civil War Reenactors study the map of the Richmond National Battlefield at Cold Harbor on Saturday.

The Confederate infantry practiced with their rifles...

...after the big guns were fired. Those cars driving by on the local road must have been surprised.

So close to the Confederate capitol, there were dozens of Southern reenactors, mostly from a unit in North Carolina...

...who camped in the woods in costume and character after the battle drills.

The food smelled pretty good, though I suspect it was far more plentiful than accurate for the Civil War.

I'm never sure how to feel about Southern pride -- I appreciate wanting to honor one's ancestors, but some of these men are nostalgic for a heritage based on slavery. Then again, it isn't like Ulysses S. Grant wasn't a bigot who threw the Jews out of Kentucky, Tennessee and Mississippi.

A reenactor looks at photos of soldiers from both the USA and CSA who died on or near this battlefield.

Adam managed to break the bridge on his violin tonight so I am particularly fried and cranky, as I must pick up Daniel from his exams in Silver Spring, then schlep to Gaithersburg to get the violin repaired. Sigh.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I like your poem. I'm only 17, but it hit me real hard...and scared me.