This early morning I wake with that same feeling of unnamed dread I've had before, this time with words: there is a very great grief coming. At first it seems it could be attached to keenly experiencing the sequence of "last times of doing" in this house as it is, as we discuss our plans for rebuilding. I have not lost my very great attachment to things. A house is a big thing.
Quick leap to darker, wider reasons. In fact, a very great grief is here, can be here, every day, every moment. That disappointment, harm, even death may come to my children or others whom I love. The conflict I feel between anything I could possibly do and the great workings of the world--like the death of Bin Laden, the clash of belief and world view that caused the war machine to necessitate his death, the incredible focus and energy that was poured into readying men and materials for such an end. The death, indeed perhaps the life, of any girl and boy in Pakistan, the country in which I was born. In all countries and wrinkles that don't even belong to countries over the face of the earth. All the ways we misunderstand, misconstrue, misapprehend. All the mistakes I have made and will make. All the change that has already come and gone, always. Many of the poems I've learned by heart stream through my mind, watching woods fill up with snow, margaret's goldengrove unleaving, and especially the thrush's ecstatic song shared on the bleakest winter evening.