A Turtle

I don’t intend to alienate anyone with political posts, or my rantings — when it is I rant — about anything, really. There are plenty of blogs and vlogs for that, many of which I’ve often read and watched. I’d intended this blog to be more literary and thoughtful. I considered deleting my previous posting, but I will let it stay, with the present disclaimer.

That said, I’m currently in no mood for politics. Forever, if necessity or common sense demand. Politics have done NOTHING positive for me. It’s like an addiction: It seems promising at first, but before you know it, it does nothing but take from you. Politics can cost you relationships with those closest, and most important to you. And for what? Something you have no control over, and can’t benefit you in any way.

Don’t believe the hype about activism. Politics as a whole may matter, but to the individual, unless it’s paying your bills, it’s nothing but heartache, delusion, and wasted effort.

And that’s exactly what happened this morning. I had a fight over politics with someone dear, though not so near to me, and I dropped her from my Facebook. That might not seem like the most serious rift, but it’s one of the last lines of communication we had, and it represents a deeper, more serious rift between us. It was a long time coming. We’ve been drifting apart for at least the last year, if not the past decade…

But the loss of her in this way still highlights the damaging effect of politics in my life.

I’ve lost my taste for it, and I am angry at myself, as well as at her. She is equally to blame for letting the political come between us, though I will admit the rift did not begin with our vastly differing worldviews. It’s always about relationships. With other people, within each of us, and, of course, between us.

But I don’t want to hear, see, or think about politics. I want to focus right now on something I have some control or influence over, that doesn’t make me want to kill someone, that doesn’t cause division and strife with the most important people in my life. I want only to spend my time and energy on things that could lead to something productive, some improvement in my life.

Politics is nothing but bad news.

The truth is, though it’s been 14 years since we were a couple, I’ll never stop loving her. I’ve told her that numerous times, but I’m pretty sure she never believed it. She doesn’t understand how that could be, and so she dismisses it.

Deep exhalation. Centering myself.

I’ll use this adversity, this tragedy of 40 acts, as an opportunity. There is nothing quite so motivating as loss in sparking the creative drive. Or so I’ve found. Even when it creeps slowly up toward you, so slowly and steadily you can watch it coming over the course of years, yet still not be able to prevent its inevitable arrival.

A few minutes ago I saw a turtle crawling across my driveway from my bedroom window. I rushed downstairs to get a closer look at it, though I’ve no idea what my hurry was about. It was only a foot from where I’d first seen it when I got outside.

There it was, slowly creeping across the concrete, and into the grass, though I don’t know if he even knew where he was going. I tried having a cordial conversation with the little fella — a box turtle with a carapace about five inches from front to back. He stopped his jaunty jog, and eyed me suspiciously for a minute or two, then went off on his merry way again. Not that one can actually tell if a turtle is merry. But at least he didn’t retreat into his shell. Or her shell. Whatever the hell.

So I just let her go. She is gone now. I’ll miss her. Forever, I’m sure.

And so I’m reminded of my favorite poem, by Ogden Nash.

“The Turtle”

The turtle lives ‘twixt plated decks
Which practically conceal its sex.
I think it clever of the turtle
In such a fix to be so fertile.

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