Live Virtual Group Session: 6pm EST April 3rd 2020

Thank you to everyone who joined us for this session!

58 participants joined us from all over the country and even the world: from San Francisco to NYC, from Canada to Texas,  from Seattle to West Virginia, and even as far as Greece!

The text we read together was Days by Philip Larkin. In reading the poem out loud more than once, we noticed how we paid attention to different parts of the poem in virtue of our readers’ different voices and expressivity. In our discussion, we pointed to the ways in which time and space converge in the text, aided by the author’s stylistic choices (even just beginning from the punctuation!). We reflected on the ways in which “the days are where we live”, particularly from the perspective of the multitude of roles and identities we each brought into our space. 

After 20 minutes of discussion, we wrote to the prompt “Write about the day that brought you here”. We were amazed at the talent and beauty we heard in the writings shared, each offering insight into the variety of paths that make our community such a rich space. We discussed the presence of time in our responses to the piece: in the recognition of the “precariousness of each precious day” or in the “weight of the variety of responsibilities” accompanying our journeys to the present.

Participants are warmly encouraged to share what you wrote below, to keep the conversation going here, bearing in mind that the blog of course is a public space where confidentiality is not assured.

Please join us for our next session: Sunday April 5th at 12pm EST, with more times to be announced shortly.

AND PLEASE NOTE: in an effort to make these sessions more secure, starting next week we will be having individualized registration for these sessions which will be accessed from the Live Virtual Sessions page of the blog.

We look forward to seeing you again soon!

Days
BY PHILIP LARKIN

What are days for?
Days are where we live.   
They come, they wake us   
Time and time over.
They are to be happy in:   
Where can we live but days?

Ah, solving that question
Brings the priest and the doctor   
In their long coats
Running over the fields.

Philip Larkin, "Days " from Whitsun Weddings. Copyright © Estate of Philip Larkin.  Reprinted by permission of Faber and Faber, Ltd.

11 thoughts on “Live Virtual Group Session: 6pm EST April 3rd 2020

  1. Noah

    Chopped into bits at the beginning. I woke up twice … three times. This morning I made a commitment to remove my face again, but something felt perverse in this iteration; forced to choose between two amputations, but one calling more to me, myself. Better to loose the gangrenous arm than a leg that supports the rest. Better to drink from a clearer stream than to be victim to seeming the best.

    Like

  2. Doug McCaskey

    I walked in with confident stride; I had everything figured out.
    An Envelope
    plain white
    with a sticker.
    My Name
    centered.
    I unfolded with my envelope.

    Emotions racing each other
    Happiness, joy, reassurance, uncertainty, fear
    Why was I fearful?
    Take a step back and put one foot in front of the other.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Stephanie Goldklang

    Write About The Day That Brought You Here:

    September 11th, 1977. The Washington Post described the weather as indescribable.
    September 11th; a day filled with birthday cakes, milestones, and always had such a nice ring to it.

    9/11. My day.
    My passcode on websites, my answer to bouncers at bars.

    9/11 Two-thousand and one. Robbed me of my special day.
    Robbed people of their lives.
    Robbed them of time and a future.

    What will 9/11/2020 bring?
    Peace?
    A return to normalcy?
    What is to become of the day that brought me here?

    -Stephanie Goldklang

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Maureen

    Thank you Nellie, Catherine, Joe and fellow participants for your careful listening and feedback.
    My (4) minute writing April 3, 2020:
    “Write about the day that brought me here? Tumbling over years of responsibility, over the shame of self and sins, somersaulting down the hill of life, stopping mid flip to write, in fits and starts as the pace of life accelerated, I finally came to a stop at the bottom. Or was it just a ledge? No matter, I knew I must honor the voice inside that said write, write, write……. “

    Like

  5. Michele Luckenbaugh

    The day that brought me here…

    Stay at home.
    The order reverberated over and over
    like a scratched 45.
    World closing in.
    Walls moving inward.
    My mind imprisoned in a secure lock-box.
    The key just outside my reach.

    To think, to create,
    freeing the mind, freeing the spirit.
    Free to roam, if only in the confines of my mind.
    To see the limitless night-time sky
    with its twinkling lights.
    Getting lost in its vastness and the clarity of existence.
    To run like a marathoner, reaching for the finish line,
    outstretced limbs exhilarated.
    No boundaries, no limits.
    My refuge.

    Like

    • al3793

      Michele, A stay at home order confines us physically but the mind, the spirit remain unconfined without limits and creativity permits existence to expand. Lovely. Andre

      Like

  6. Andre Lijoi

    Dyssynchrony
    Text: My son’s fever came back.
    Phone Call: I need help with a phone visit.
    Portal: My anxiety is really out of control.
    Phone Call: We have a video visit ready for you.
    Text: Please call me about my chest pain, I think I need a CT.
    Resident: Do you have time to rehearse for a public service video we are
    making?
    Portal: My daughter, husband and I have a fever. They told us to go get
    tested, but I want your opinion first.
    Email: Rewrite scripts for rationing vents for coming surge.
    Colleague: A woman I baby sat for just drowned and her son too.
    Portal: I am tired of being abused. Please help me.
    Phone call: My anxiety is out of control. What self care helps you? What gives you hope? Good, I want you to try those two things every day.
    Update me next week.
    Reflection: Must trust, equanimity, compassion. I HOPE I helped.

    Like

    • Michele Luckenbaugh

      Physicians and nurses are a special breed of humanity. Working in this time of death and despair must erode the spirit to an extent. Keep always in your mind that “this too will pass”.
      And I’m sure you helped. We are all being given a second chance to get it right- the way we treat each other and the world. I hope we all take notice of that fact.
      Michele

      Like

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