Monday, January 23, 2006

I, too, dislike it

OK, so today was my first day of work, although it consisted mostly of a day-long orientation session with a federal agency. I will not be writing about work at all on this blog, as that just seems like a really, really, really, really bad idea.

But I will write about what happens on my trip in and back to work, or what happens in the outside world around my office. Today--big protest rally by anti-abortion groups on the anniversary of Roe vs. Wade. Was going from one federal office building to another a few metro stops away. Left Office Building 1 and noticed there were a lot of non-federal-worker types milling about. Noticed one guy with a kid about my daughter's age; he was not dressed in office worker type garb. Noticed before him a couple of elderly women carrying posters with, from the bits of type I could see, pro-life messages on them. Then noticed the guy and his kid, who ask me if the metro stop is nearby--I point it out to them. They walk past me, and I notice the "Jesus Saves" sticker (large) on the guy's backpack.

Get out at Union Station metro, which is packed. Lots of people with signs held low now, smiling, obviously had a good large crowd experience--melded with the group feeling, on some kind of endorphin high. The government is wrong. Clearly. There is injustice afoot. These people have come, they have protested, and if not victorious, they have at least merged with some greater force than themselves. They have experienced the sublime. And they are now better people for it. Several priests with their clerical collars on. Lots of children. Lots of children in strollers. Lots of mothers. Large, purposeful man with a substantial wooden sculpture of Jesus on the cross, which he carries low--Jesus is sideways in his frozen suffering. But not actually upside down, dragging close to the ground.

Outside the metro, there is a large mass of people waiting to enter the subway. They are calm and well behaved. Large motorcade going by, with many DC police on motorcycles and in squad cars with all lights going. Some Secret Service. An ambulance. Sedans and limousines with lights going. The typical block off the major avenue (in this case, Massachusetts--which says what to these people? One of the most liberal states in the Union is their exit ramp?) strategy--DC squad cars with lights going parked akimbo to the intersections with Mass Ave, holding hundreds of pedestrians at bay.

Metro officers with large flourescent vests holding the crowd at bay at the metro entrance, letting in just so many at a time.

I have a sudden urge to write a poem using the first line of Marianne Moore's "Poetry": "I, too, dislike it: there are things that are important beyond all this fiddle."

Today: the visual reasserts itself as a poetic medium for me. So much lately have been working with the auditory, the sensory, but not the visual, the imagistic, the metaphoric. Blind, I have been working blind, but am the better for it. Sometimes you have to close your eyes to really think with your body and see with your heart.

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