For Wordless Wednesday.
I dream I am at a concert in a park. Or some very big event. With my significant other. It is a beautiful day, the sun is shining, the grass is green, there are rolling hills and trees. People are arriving.
There is a gasp of horror. There is a large box, like the hold of a ship. We hurry to look in: there are three open containers down inside, tops removed. They are full of children. Smuggled? Immigrants? The containers are surrounded by water. My significant other and I drop our things and climb down the long hold ladder into the water, which is cold, filthy, and comes up to my thighs. I’ve kicked off my sandals. We are wading to the containers. An ICE agent in a black uniform, bullet proof vest, belt with tools and guns, and riot helmet, blocks me and says, “You have to be wearing shoes to help.” He is handing out plastic stretchers. He can’t see my feet. Yes, I know it’s dangerous and my feet could get cut, but this is probably sewage and dangerous even with shoes. We should really be in hazmat gear but the kids could be dying. I just look at him, silent, and he hands me a stretcher.
Enough people have come forward, into the water, that all the kids have been placed in one of the containers. None of them are dead. They are being lifted out one by one, to ambulances. Now the hold is surrounded by rubberneckers. I climb out and find my purse and camera and shoes. I am grateful no opportunist has stolen them. The ICE agents are telling people to back off and give them room to work. The news crews are there and a Washington State politician says, “This is Washington State, we will take care of these children, we will not see them separated and incarcerated, I will see that they are returned to their parents.” Good luck, I think, but at least there are tons of witnesses and cameras and news crews.
I need to find somewhere to scrub my legs down with soap and to find my significant other. It’s getting more crowded.
I wake up.
And what I notice is that the water did not stink and was not full of lumps of floating excrement. As I wake I hope that I won’t catch something horrible and die….usually my dreams have full sound, color and smells too. I wonder where the children were from, and why, and whether they had some sort of sanitation….
For the Ragtag Daily Prompt #76: freedom.
Immigrant children separated from parents and placed in “camps”. This is concentration camp, jail. They have not been returned to their parents: https://www.npr.org/2018/06/19/621065383/what-we-know-family-separation-and-zero-tolerance-at-the-border. This is a horror committed by my country. Return the children to their parents.
The deer were in the empty lot across the street from my clinic yesterday. Both fawns went to check in with their parent when I got out of the car with my camera. Imagine the terror of a small child whose parents have been taken away.
For the Ragtag Daily Prompt #75: blue.
We are having fire skies, with the sun setting through smoke, here. I took this blue photo at the same time in the evening, the polarized light acting oddly through the smoke. It enhanced the reds and the blues. The smoke makes me feel low level worry all the time and sad.
For the Ragtag Daily Prompt: monsoon.
Today’s prompt of monsoon makes me think both of the fires burning all over, California, eastern Washington, and of the floods in other places.
I took this on a vacation, two days on Herron Island. In the morning we were relaxed on the porch when I spotted smoke on the other side of the cabin. A lot of smoke. My friend explained that sometimes people burn slash, including tires. I was unreassured and insisted on going to look.
It was a house burning down.
The firetrucks must come from the mainland by ferry.
It was terrifying. I took this within 5 minutes of getting there, within 10 minutes of seeing smoke. There were oxygen tanks, live ammunition and propane, exploding.
At first we didn’t know if there was anyone inside. It was clear that we were not getting to them and that they were gone. The only person home had escaped, with the help of a neighbor on the other side. The house burned to the ground very quickly. I had our things loaded back in the car as soon as it was clear that the island responders were waiting for the fire trucks. This house was across the street and one door down.
Prayers for the flooded and the fires. Prayers for us to care for the earth and the earth to be gentle with us.
We walked yesterday and saw three bunnies down the road. Then we realized that there was a young one right by us on the verge. We froze, except for the cameras, and this little one munched leaves and grass. Delightful! A bird finally sounded a warning and our friend hopped into the bushes.
No one gets angry at rabbits for being scared or shy. Why do we put so much pressure on children and on people for these emotions? Why do we label some emotions as “bad”? Fear and shyness help the young bunny survive and humans have these emotions too for the same reasons.
My daughter would not talk to strangers for years. She considered everyone strangers even if I knew them. It was not enough to have me introduce her. She would not speak. At two she would observe new day care staff for two weeks before she would speak to them. And I did not try to change her, because maybe… maybe that is more sensible than we adults want to admit. Not all people are nice or kind or ethical. And children need to know that as they grow. Caution will help this small bunny survive.
For the Daily Prompt: shallow.
Are these waters deep or shallow?
What do I fear in the depths or am I comfortable there?
Sunrise, Port Townsend Bay, 2012, with Mount Rainier in the distance.