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Blame the Moon

trickster goddess Mohini
You might as well. The moon is a circle of reflection and shadow.

Here we go again.

The Supermoon came just after my birthday. I saw a glimpse of it, driving home from a writing group meeting, where we didn't write or even talk much about writing. Instead, we watched Lemonade and talked about loving what betrays us.

The explosion of hate crimes and racial and sexual harassment that followed the United States presidential election disrupted my work, my art, my everything. As it should.

The children in my local districts surrounded minority students, shouting "Build a wall" and "White power." Swastikas and slurs against homosexuals spread like rashes on the doorways of homes and businesses.

Is this the fever break?

I'm terrified, and I'm hopeful. I'm disgusted and relieved. I'm watching America pop its hillbilly cyst on a dirty kitchen floor.

What happens next?

Dr. Sharon Blackie, mythologist and psychologist, puts the question beautifully in her description of Trickster Times. This time of danger is also a point of unprecedented opportunity to heal what's festered just under the surface of our culture for so long.

Maybe we can talk it out on social media! Maybe we can evolve, together, taking turns with the talking stick, into an enlightened society at last.

At long last! One thousand years ago, before Facebook and Twitter, Ukrainian churchgoers shared cat pictures, mean tweets, and type-amen prayers by carving them into cathedral walls.

I don't think that is the path of healing for me. The more I learn about Trump supporters and listen to so-called "conservatives" and read analyses about who to blame and how to have the most righteous feelings, the more disgusted I become. The less able to love and hope. It's all pure ugliness laid bare.

Nielsen illustration from East of the Sun, West of the Moon
We are nothing but animals.

And that, I think, is my hope for compassion and motivation. The basest of common denominators. We are all meat and bones and blood, wetware not hardware, fear wearing masks of bravado. There are people who punch up (speaking truth to power in the "Post-Truth" era), and there are bullies who punch down--out of weakness.

Nobody else commits suicide at the rate of white men.

This is true, even when they have more of the wealth, more of the privileges, more of the power measured by what we can touch and see and hear and suffer at their hands.

The self-loathing hovers under very thin skin.

A friend of mine said she's been having dreams that she hears an angry dog barking. And a woman's voice tells her cheerfully, "Don't worry, it's only a cat."

Where do we go from here?

On Monday night, it was too cloudy for us to see the full Supermoon. We gave up and went inside. Our five-year-old daughter put on her jacket and went back out and climbed a tree as high as she could go, and she waited until the clouds broke and the light came, and she called us outside.

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