Friday, August 11, 2017

slow turning

"Slow Turning"

When I was a boy,
I thought it just came to ya'
But I never could tell what's mine
So it didn't matter anyway

My only pride and joy
Was this racket down here
Bangin' on an old guitar
And singin' what I had to say

I always thought our house was haunted
But nobody said boo to me
I never did get what I wanted
Now I get what I need

It's been a slow turnin'
From the inside out
A slow turnin'
But you come about

Slow learnin'
But you learn to sway
A slow turnin' baby
Not fade away

Now I'm in my car
I got the radio on
I'm yellin' at the kids in the back seat
'Cause they're bangin' like Charlie Watts

You think you've come so far
In this one horse town
Then she's laughin' that crazy laugh
'Cause you haven't left the parkin' lot

Time is short and here's the damn thing about it
You're gonna die, gonna die for sure
And you can learn to life with love or without it
But there ain't no cure

There's just a...


Do you know this song? Sometimes it slides into my mind..."time is short and here's the damn thing about it/You're gonna die, gonna die for sure"

I just found out that an old pal of mine died last month. Her husband didn't know where I was and because I'm off facebook and moved to Labrador - well he tried. I hadn't seen Cinda for a couple of years - our lives took different directions but I have to say her death really struck me. 

She died a mean long death too. I talked to her husband last night. They were married for nearly 51 years - some of that good, some not so good, but they stuck. Last I saw Cinda she was suffering from rheumatoid arthritis. Her hands were very bad and she was having a hard time continuing to live the way she was used to. Things got worse. She developed problems with her breathing - a complication of the RA - and had to be hospitalized a number of times. She would pass out and fractured many bones in her falls. Her eyesight was going and she didn't want any surgeries so even reading or watching television became too hard. She lost way too much weight and couldn't regain any strength. Her husband helped with everything and her children who lived nearby helped too. 

Through it all she was still Cinda. She still could cackle like a loon, and demand respect with a glance, and compel those around her to reckon with her force.

She told me a story of her first teaching job that is incredible and touching. I'm going to write it up, check the details with her husband and send it in to the Globe & Mail's Lives Lived column. It is the story of a young woman teaching the toughest class in the toughest school. It is about not giving up on anyone. Though she'd be the first to deny this - Cinda was a true Bodhisattva  - and I'd like to tell this powerful story.

People's lives mean something. Their stories shouldn't fade away like their bodies do. They should keep on being told as inspiration and hope for those coming behind.

Stay tuned.

Here's a painting I made that I know she would have appreciated -

Tina looked at the dirty dishes in the sink, the dust tumbleweeds rolling through
the house, and the bills piling up on the kitchen table. Sighing, she rolled up
her sleeves.   Then she came to her senses.

1 comment:

Margot Kinberg said...

I'm very, very sorry to hear of your friend's death, Jan. I hope you do write up her story, and I love that painting!