The warmth of recent days has been just a tease. Daytime highs are expected to cool to the mid-fifties by Sunday, increasing to the low to mid sixties by Tuesday and Wednesday of next week and then slipping back to the mid-fifties again on Thursday. As I consider the ebb and flow of temperatures and their accompanying atmospheric attire, it occurs to me that Climate and Weather are unique; each with its singular personality. In years past—in my youth—the two of them were generally pleasant, well-behaved, and respectful of those in their presence. But, as both of them have aged, they have become belligerent bullies who find puerile satisfaction in demonstrating the ability to cause discomfort, inconvenience, and—occasionally—stark fear. Weather, especially, seems to get perverse thrills by throwing tantrums that leave terror and worse in her wake. But Climate is no choir-boy; he, too, has become enamored with his ability to change the evolutionary course of the planet, transforming billions of square miles of ice into deeper and deeper ocean waters. They are bullies, to be sure. But they might not have behaved so badly if we had not poisoned their sources of sustenance. We may be reaping our just rewards.


Just before I awoke this morning, I was in the midst of a disturbing dream. The details were so convoluted and confusing that any attempt to reconstruct it and describe it would be fruitless. Its purpose, though, was clear: to ensure that I never escape feelings of guilt and regret. It was the sort of dream that leaves a person exhausted, heartsick, inconsolable—impossible to forget and impossible to overcome. The dream accentuated certain of my flaws about which I do not need reminding; but regardless of need, the reminders remain. Sometimes I daydream about how restorative it would be to have the ability to completely erase certain of one’s memories. But, on the other hand, that capability might make one more likely to repeat the same mistakes, knowing the anguish that accompanies them could be easily erased. We may learn from our mistakes, but do we need to be reminded of them every waking…and sleeping…hour? It’s hard to say. Perhaps constant reminders, as unpleasant as they may be, are required to prevent their repetition.


I recently began to experience a flurry of “floaters” in my vision. Sometimes, flecks flit across my line of vision. Other times, the “flecks” are much bigger and have distinct, but fleeting, shapes. They are not particularly bothersome, but because I know floaters can be symptomatic of potentially serious underlying conditions, I am keeping tabs on them. If they get appreciably more common or if they interfere with my vision in any way, I will have my eyes checked again. The last time I had an eye exam was in mid-October. There was nothing of concern then. Pollen and frequent sneezing may be the culprits causing the floaters of late. Time will tell.


Though awake, I was not quite ready to get up at 5 this morning. A minute or two of adapting to consciousness and I would have been prepared to spring out of bed and charge into the morning darkness. But Phaedra was insistent. She meowed and paced back and forth on top of mi novia, who would have preferred to sleep—without the cat trudging back and forth, interrupting her slumber.


Life is fragile.

About John Swinburn

"Love not what you are but what you may become."― Miguel de Cervantes
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2 Responses to Fragility

  1. Patty, you know I am ready…anytime!

  2. Patty Dacus says:

    I really like this one, John. Good stuff here. I think we need a conversation sometime soon to discuss!

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