Mythos & Marginalia

life notes; flaws and all

j.g. lewis

original content and images ©j.g. lewis

a daily breath...

A thought du jour, my daily breath includes collected and conceived observations, questions of life, fortune cookie philosophies, reminders, messages of peace and simplicity, unsolicited advice, inspirations, quotes and words that got me thinking. They may get you thinking too . . .

Mondays are just young Fridays

It wasn’t about age; it is still about the music.
   I, and an almost-full arena, took in a spectacular concert last night as The Who played Toronto.
   Augmented by a full orchestra, the timeless British band gave us two hours of absolute magic; full of the sonic glory you expect from guys who have, at several points in history, proved that rock and roll is what it is.
   The Who could have spent the evening simply trotting out a career’s worth of hits, but instead opened with a string of compositions from the rock opera Tommy. Later in the night we were treated to a solid set from Quadrophenia. Both albums go well back into the ‘70s.
   Of course they played, and played well, the songs that many people know more from the CSI television series, but several of the big hits where left out (they did not play I Can See For Miles my absolute favourite song ever), but that was okay. Last night was all about the music.
   I’ve long considered The Who to be mostly about Pete Townshend, the guitarist who wrote much of the band’s catalogue. Now, at 77 years of age, Townshend is still in fine form. But so is lead singer and front man Roger Daltry, 78, singing and screaming in a manner that defies age.
   I’ve seen the band a couple of times in my lifetime, and chances are I will not have the opportunity to see them again. This may be The Who’s last tour, but then Townshend said he would quit touring in 1982.
   So there is hope, and there is still the music.

10/03/2022                                                                     j.g.l.

 

Giving Into Time

Gardens across the city are looking tired.

The flowers and foliage have for months been growing, blooming, celebrating the glorious sunshine and making our days on this big, beautiful planet ever more enjoyable.

But, come October, even the most curated gardens and manicured lawns are showing signs of wear and tear from the dipping nocturnal temperatures, lack of rain, care, or even neglect.

The cycle from spring, through summer, and now autumn, becomes more obvious each day. Daisies, Black-eyed Susan, Echinacea, once-boastful geraniums and hydrangeas are giving into time.

I can’t even find a dahlia anywhere.

Our landscape is getting darker.

The colours of flowers we count on to fill our lives will soon only be available in photographs, florist shops, or bouquets of the day at the market. We take it wherever we can, whenever we can, but we will wait patiently for next year’s gardens to bring back the everyday joy as the cycle will begin once again.

10/02/2022                                                                            j.g.l.

Truth and Reconciliation

truth
comes at a cost

honour
those who have already paid

respect
the process

healing
takes time

forgiveness
takes even longer

 

In Canada, September 30 marks the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation. This day honours the Survivors of residential schools, the children who never returned home, and their families and communities.
Orange Shirt Day is an indigenous-led grassroots commemorative day intended to raise awareness of the individual, family and community inter- generational impacts of residential schools and to promote the concept of “Every Child Matters”.

09/30/2022                                                                            j.g.l.

I'm like a pencil;
sometimes sharp,
most days
well-rounded,
other times
dull or
occasionally
broken.
Still I write.

j.g. lewis
is a writer/photographer in Toronto.

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Intolerant of Intolerance.

Posted on January 11, 2017 by j.g.lewis Leave a comment

A year ago, out of frustration over what and who was dominating the news, I wrote and posted this right here. Somehow I thought (or hoped, or dreamed) that we, as a society or global community, would come to our senses. The situation has not changed, and neither has my hope that it will.

In all the scintillating sentences, salacious sound bites, news and views published, broadcast and available 24/7, there is a lot of nonsense about who belongs where.

Much of the talk, originally (though not original) comes top-down from leaders or potential leaders of nations as they stand tall to proclaim rights and responsibilities that clearly go against the way this planet has been evolving.

In this ever-hungry news cycle the comments make headlines, grab the first seconds of the newscast, and the views proliferate and become coffee-shop talk and idle banter. Those people stuck in the past herald these tired, old bigoted views and the velocity of these harmful ideals accelerate.

Intolerance has become the catchall word towards any of the isms, but the only thing inclusionary about the word is its ability to dress down a huge swath of the population in one swift breath. It is hatred, pure and simple, occasionally wrapped in imprudent puffery or packaged in some sort of theme-based oratory proffering intelligence.

I’m growing intolerant of intolerance. Lately it is all you hear about, whether gender-based, nationality, faith, or sexual orientation. The ‘anti’ talk comes from many sources, but right now there is one particular politician trumping out divisive language devised to prop up beliefs that one race, one religion (one country) is superior to all others.

It’s posturing, yes, but it goes far deeper. It pits people against one another, even those within the same nation.

Now I wholeheartedly believe in free speech; it is what keeps us growing intellectually and allows cultures to flourish. Part of that freedom comes with the responsibility of listening, learning, and even accepting or acknowledging the viewpoints of others. Freedom of speech does involve speaking one’s mind, but the words, phrases and diatribes need to be mindful. Even when hurtful, thoughts spoken should be founded in research and reason and not simply used to perpetuate stereotypes.

Where free speech is concerned, a well-formed argument is acceptable, even applauded. But there is little room for acceptance in any form of intolerance. Free speech comes from open minds. All the hate speech currently being bandied about promotes violence, elitism, and a shameful ideal that denigrates entire nations at a time when borders between countries are being eliminated (at least where trade and commerce is concerned).

Yes, sadly, history contains many, many examples of how opposing beings are, and have been, responsible for epic conflicts. There are currently evil powers at work in this world focused on mass destruction and devastation. But if we are to be hopeful we must look beyond these vengeful and revengeful acts and try to salvage our humanity. The trade between nations must be more than monetary.

If we allow this unruly and uncaring behaviour to repeat itself — if we allow this ever-enlarging global community to be ruled by closed minds — we are certain to not only repeat history’s past mistakes, but also deal with consequences we cannot even fathom.

Now I may be a dreamer, yes, but if people put as much effort into understanding as they do into standing their ground we may find ourselves in a position of truly being able to work out age-old conflicts.

Yes I dream big, but life is too short, and the planet too small to categorize and sub-divide the population in an effort to keep out anyone who does not look, sound, or hold the same beliefs we hold.

We live in an era of multiculturalism and mixed race. North America was, and continues to be, built on immigration. As we grow physically in size and spiritually by understanding, and as the population expands, as cultures blend and races and religions cohabitate, we must look favorably on this opportunity to grow as human beings.

We cannot paint everybody with the same brush; we can’t systematically decide who is right, or moral, or worthy, based on the hue of the skin, gender, sexual preference, language spoken, country of origin, or beliefs believed. By blindly discounting a certain population you are overlooking the opportunity to become involved with, influenced and inspired by, and more knowledgeable in the process.

It is unreal, unconscionable, and unacceptable to allow intolerance and this type of deterioration to continue. This is not about race. This is about disgrace.

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