Saturday Morning

It’s been a sad week — on top of the suicide of a young man in our community, and the sadness in David’s family of the failed relationship, a mentally ill man was shot to death by the police in Concord.  It’s not clear what happened, but with the changes happening in the public mental health system because of state budget cuts, there very well may be more events like this.  I can’t get used to how little people with no voice count, how easily they’re pushed aside in debates about funding and revenue and the trashing of budgets to take away the social safety net.  “It’s not a safety net,” a member of NH’s House Finance Committee said to our Commissioner of Health and Human Services at a recent meeting.  “It’s a hammock.  These people are swinging in hammocks and they need to get up and get to work.”  Sad.

Then David got the cold I had this week and was too sick and infectious to come with me to visit Adrienne and Matt and Emilio.  So I spent a bit of time being pouty and upset that here is yet another weekend David and I spend apart.  And then I got real.  We are both alive, we are healthy (except for our colds), we have smart, strong, healthy and highly functional children, and in three months we are going to have oceans of time spreading out around us in all directions (knock wood).  We’ll go kayaking.

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About Grace Mattern

Grace Mattern is a poet, writer, mother, grandmother, partner, friend, family member, gardener, triathlete, hiker and for 30 years was the Executive Director of the NH Coalition Against Domestic and Sexual Violence. She resigned her position at the Coalition on June 15, 2011 in order to concentrate on her writing, while continuing to engage in the movement to end violence against women as a consultant and advisor. Her chapbook Fever of Unknown Origin was published in 2001 and her full-length poetry book The Truth About Death was published in 2012.
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2 Responses to Saturday Morning

  1. Sue says:

    Right on, Grace. The profoundness of life is about the unevenness we experience. It’s about holding space for those moments reminding us that human ‘perfectionism’ is about owning our pouty judgments and allowing them to guide us into simple celebrations of deep gratitude.

  2. Dear Grace,
    I was reminded of a famous poem by a most celebrated Japanese haiku poet named Kobayashi Issa (1763-1827) who lived a life of great loss and pain but who in the end looked on the positive side much like you do in this blog. Thought you might like it:
    Insects on a bough
    floating downriver,
    still singing.

    and for my BloHaiSis another one that makes me smile:

    A bath when you’re born,
    a bath when you die,
    how stupid.

    From The Essential Haiku edited by Robert Hass

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