Greetings dear reader, from the blank canvas that is a white Winnipeg winter.
Snow is falling gently as I write this; a soft quietude floating down from the sky that has the power to settle even a city. I sip a cup of bright green tea as I stare out the window into a monochromatic world. For a moment I forget about the horns blasting Trump-isms a stone’s throw away from my home. For now, the snow covers up the sins of the world. But, spring is coming.
A pigeon cuts across my vision: simultaneously haphazard and yet precise, it flaps in the way only a pigeon can flap. It is a survivor that has stayed the course through a hard season that sent other birds south. In some ways that’s akin to how I’m feeling these days, but thankfully, just as the winged wonder does outside my window, I too have stuck my haphazard landings thus far.
I shift my gaze back to the pages in front of me; staring at a handful of newsletter drafts, an array of work from pre-pandemic times that now seems irrevocably distant.
In a way they are an archive: of where I was at and where I wanted to go in this conversation with you. As partially watered seeds of experience and thought, they’ve become irrelevant time capsules in light of the times. Put aside and scattered, these old writings never got a chance to bloom as my focus quickly shifted to more urgent situations on March 16th, 2020.
I blinked (didn’t we all?), and two years vanished. This is not to say that life skipped a beat - in fact, being a freelancer that was flying without a safety net meant that life’s rhythm only sped up.
Hard earned jobs disappeared instantaneously. A simple home to sleep in became the place where everything happened. Care for others became an absolute priority. In other words, momentum came to a halt amidst the constant public health curveballs that kept coming along with civic responsibility.
I am tired, as I’m sure most of us are these days. But I am resilient, even though being strong doesn’t always feel strong. And I suspect you are too, as you made it through the fire in your own unique way.
We find the things that keep us going. Writing this, for example, doesn’t deplete me - in fact it is a creativity that fuels me, like making photographs or picking up a musical instrument. In survival mode it slipped away as wave after pandemic wave took the creative wind out of my sails. But, as with all of life’s ebbs and flows, I can feel it cycling back with a force that seems to come from beyond.
It has been a while, and now I reach out like that of an old friend. Much has happened - too much to recount - but, as old friends do, I hope that we too can pick up from here with a trust for one another.
I doubt that the tears of grief and joy from this time can ever be fully expressed within words, though I suspect that poetry might have a secret way of pointing towards it. What I do know is that who we are today is shaped by what we’ve gone through - and haven’t we gone through a lot? If we move forward together, we can bear witness to each others’ lived stories on timelines that have no beginning or end. There is no going backward - just a new moment at our fingertips.
In the spirit of a fresh start, I’ve renamed this newsletter Intersections and reset its counter to zero. I intend this to be a place to explore the creation of new work; where the spark of an idea need not be sheltered, but instead fed and nurtured. These aren’t going to be book writings (though maybe one day they’ll be fodder for one). They aren’t going to be diaries (but there will be bits of me sprinkled in for flavour). They won’t necessarily follow the formal guidelines for syntax or style (…word play is the new foreplay?). At least that’s the (anti)thesis.
The new name flows from a personal draw to explore the intersections of contrasting ideas. Where wilderness meets humanity, traditional meets modern, innovation meets responsibility…these confluences are full of potential.
Everything is interconnected, and perspective allows us to better understand how actions inevitably ripple out into the ecosystem. This is where I’m going to aim the discussion. Weaving through the winds of organized chaos, we’ll see where we land.
Thank you for choosing to receive these missives from me. I have some novel ideas that I hope are worth sticking around for, but I understand that nothing lasts forever so it’s always one-click to unsubscribe. (Plus, I never look at unsubscription info so you don’t ever have to worry about me taking it personally.)
Stay soft and stay brave.
Your friendly neighbourhood pigeon,