Kathy Riordan

Kathy Riordan
Florida, United States
April 27
One woman's view of life and the universe. Follow @katriord on Twitter.


Kathy Riordan's Links

Poetry, if you like that sort of thing
Some great stuff around here
Where I've Been, Where I'm Going
What I Can't Write About
Twitter Is What You Make It
Articles on World War II
Some of my work on Iran
A little about me
I also write here
DECEMBER 31, 2011 10:04AM

The Good Year

Rate: 25 Flag


"What rough beast, its hour come round at last, slouches toward Bethlehem to be born?"

~ from The Second Coming, William Butler Yeats


It was universally acknowledged that it had been a good year.  Standing at the podium, overlooking a sea of humanity, it was easy to think one could slip into serene and permanent slumber, content in the knowledge that there was a general increase in the things that mattered most and decrease in the things that didn't.

If being rich and thin were the marking points, then bank balances were up and weight was down.

It's possible those weren't the markers, that there were other factors, like general peace and harmony and good karma, that material things mattered little if at all, that those who loved us loved us and those who didn't had nicely turned ankles.
But this was not the good year.
This was a year best forgotten; when one was writing the story of their life near its close it was the chapter omitted.  When midnight was striking on the last day of the year it was slipping out the back door without so much as a gracious taking of leave.  It was gone, gone, and best forgotten.
Nothing remarkable happened in this year.  No babies were born whose lives were celebrated.  No triumphs occurred in the corners of one's home or on distant shores.  Love did not multiply.  Everything stood still, or spun in circles, but nothing moved in ways that were memorable.   The best lacked all conviction.
It was universally acknowledged that it had been a good year.  There was a glow over that sea of humanity, something that radiated beyond the individual to the collective, something that vibrated past the horizon.  People looked beyond themselves, and to the greater good, lives were spared and celebrated and cherished, and love bore fruit.  There wasn't just a season of giving; it was a way of life.  Doors and arms were open.  Children laughed.  Fear was banished.

Everything remarkable happened in this year.  Babies were born, lives celebrated, triumphs at home, triumphs abroad.  
Love was unconditional, and took wing.  

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"And the worst are full of passionate intensity."

Here's to a better 2012.
I've stayed away from end of the year summaries and predictive surmises, as I usually do. This reflection though shows "both sides now." May your year ahead be fulfilling and creative. Best in 2012, Kathy.
If you'll pardon the corniness Kathy, it will be universally acknowledged that this is a fine post with which to ring out the old and ring in the new. Happy 2012 to you.
Turning and turning in the widening gyre
The falcon cannot hear the falconer;
Yes, but wait. How do we interpret the falcon? As majestic
Ascensional symbol, or predatory aggressive bird of prey?

Replace the falconer?

Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold;
Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world,

What center? Stable government? Or solid citizenry,
United? A glow over that sea of humanity, something
that radiated beyond the individual
to the collective, something that vibrated past the horizon.
People looked beyond themselves, and to the greater good...

The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere
The ceremony of innocence is drowned;

Well that is life. Innocence must be lost, to be regained.
How else to know its worth?
Like poetry and soothsaying. Like an elder taking a long breath and then enfolding his people close with wisdom.

Lovely. Just sorta sad and sorta joyous at different breaths of hope.
Here's to a good year. Cheers.
You sure cover all sides of it, and artfully, too. May the bright side of every year come through for all of us.
Truly thoughtful and engaging, Kathy. And lyrically stunning. Really stunning.
Here's to a good year, filled with good things. And may the good outweigh the bad by a huge margin. I don't think we can ask for much more in this difficult world.
Hoping for a year that has more balance, and perhaps even a lean to the good...
A poetic breeze, this. You took the good and the bad and the hope, Kathy, and made it into something beautiful. May your 2012 be blessed with happiness.
Happiness in 2012!
Well done, Kathy. I enjoyed reading it. Personally, I would like to drive a stake through the heart of 2011. I'm really looking forward to 2012.
Wonderfully put, and thanks for the Yeats references. I hope that 2012 will bring peace, health, and happiness.
I really enjoyed this. Being new to Salon, and having read this, I feel like I've missed out on a lot. More please. And thank you.
Best wishes for a wonderful year.
I love this post for it see the brighter things of life. Cheers and more.
I hope your husband is doing well now. I admire you for keeping up with your writing all during this.

Love the graph with slipping out the back door. That somehow seems so right. I didn't have your loss, but it was the worst year of my life and I feel better in 2012, what I never suspected would happen. Of course I often think of you and wish for a better year--could not be worse, right? R
Some 42 year old rated You.

There's a light in the attic.
The house is dark and shuttered,
I can see a flickerin' flutter.
And I know what it's about.
There's a light in the attic.
I can see from the outside,
And I know you are on the inside ... lookin' out.
It's been rough for many of us folk way too long.
Kim Doan was here with my son this mid-morn.
She lost another home. Banker stole her old hut.
They robbed her of health, apartments, hope,
a laundromat etc., I spoke with her daughter.
Kim's two children and husband suffer much.
Kim's youngest son was breast fed in 1993.
We're compiling information. cc Take care.
Never quit. Kim speaks softly. She a nun?
She has no money. I borrowed $10,000.
I assumed the FBI would intervene. Nope.
This time I'll hand carry briefs to YNW.
You Know Who.
Gandhi's notion of democracy was:
The weakest should have assistance.
They should have opportunity too.
'Weak' deserve same opportunity.
paraphrased -

Crooks and nasties are
the same as auto thieves
bankers Moe-Jack-Manny
Cops insist it's okay to
be cuffed with fur cuffs
and handcuffs no pinch
Wear to the White House
Orange flip flops and thee
Soft Alpaca pink wool socks
Hang in there. Kim Doan?
Never give up. Never quit.
Kim speaks as soft as:
Monk Thich Nhat Hanh
She's American/Vietnamese.

The solicitor for Mike Fisher
and several lawyer robbed her.