Today an Egypt Air flight went missing on its journey from Paris to Cairo. We now presume it is in the sea. “Experts” suspect a terrorist act. It is unlikely to be a story with a happy ending. I could go on a rant about terrorism, the pointlessness of causing random death, the theft of lives. I could, but it would be just as pointless. It amounts to nothing more than slactivism.
So instead I’ll give you a poem about drowning which I find very funny in a black kind of way. Life is too short for misery and moaning. Laughing feels better. Laugh in adversity. Laugh at the absurdity of the small mindedness of those who believe that their murder death kill will make any difference to the flight of a swallow.
This is a photograph of me: by Margaret Atwood
It was taken some time ago
At first it seems to be
print: blurred lines and grey flecks
blended with the paper;
then, as you scan
it, you can see something in the left-hand corner
a thing that is like a branch: part of a tree
(balsam or spruce) emerging
and, to the right, halfway up
what ought to be a gentle
slope, a small frame house.
In the background there is a lake,
and beyond that, some low hills.
(The photograph was taken
the day after I drowned.
I am in the lake, in the center
of the picture, just under the surface.
It is difficult to say where
precisely, or to say
how large or how small I am:
the effect of water
on light is a distortion.
but if you look long enough
you will see me.)