Lest we forget

I just can’t shake that image. It’s something I’ll never forget…

Like everyone else, I’ve witnessed heinous sights online since the vicious attack on Ukraine began, but none so upsetting as that image

It was the anguished screams of a young woman that grabbed my attention and drew me toward my husband’s computer screen, where he sat watching a horrific scene as it unfolded in the Ukraine: a man and woman racing along a hospital corridor and stumbling into an examination room behind a nurse who cradled a small bundle wrapped in a blood-soaked blue blanket. The woman’s voice was frantic as she cried out, “Oh God, why couldn’t you save him?” Gently, the nurse laid the blue-wrapped bundle on a table—the blankets parted to reveal a beautiful 18-month-old baby boy. He was dead. The sobbing young mother bent over to place a gentle kiss on his tiny forehead. 

I promptly dissolved into a mess of tears as I remembered how, just the day before, I too had bent over a baby boy, my precious grandson, to plant a kiss on his forehead, laughing as he squealed with delight—something that this little boy and his mother would never again be able to do. 

This heartbreaking glimpse of just one of the many murders that have taken place since Putin waged his senseless war against the Ukraine is the one that I’ll never stop seeing. How is it even possible to process the loss of so many innocent lives, simply because a madman with a rotted soul happens to walk among us? It’s hard not to wonder Why?

History has provided more than enough proof that the suffering and loss of life that comes with war is never worth the price, but time has a way of making us forget the lessons taught from distant battlefields. 

Bad things happen, we assimilate, we go on with our daily lives, and quite often, we forget. 

Perhaps for that reason, every so often, the universe spawns malevolent souls such as Putin, empty of any real emotion other than their lust for power at any cost, and plunks them here on earth to wreak havoc on the innocent. It’s certainly the only answer I can come up with—it’s the only way to assign any kind of meaning to the horrific images I’ve seen.

I need to believe that such dark souls are sent here for a specific reason—that they are tools meant to teach us lessons of value: that in the end, good will always, always find a way to triumph over evil. 

I need to believe that God, or a higher power, or the universe, or whatever you choose to call the energy source that creates all of the miracles that make life such a blessing—also wants us to learn the importance of keeping our faith in the belief that good will reign

If you look at how quickly a whole world became united in our deep compassion for the people of Ukraine, as well as in our outrage against the abhorrent actions of a monster—that is proof that good reigns. 

The world will not tolerate evil, and the monster’s name will now forever go down in history as nothing more than a bad taste in the mouth of humanity—that is proof that good reigns.

The madman never anticipated the fierce courage and spirit of the Ukrainian people, and that the world would rise to stand behind them—that is proof that good reigns.

The current plight of the Ukrainian people serves to further accentuate how devoid the madman is of basic principles of decency, like honesty or any of the other great virtues demonstrated in the past by the most admired and respected leaders in history. It has never been more clear why he must resort to lies, oppression and punishment to force his people to obey him—that is proof that good reigns.

No matter how Putin’s fruitless war plays out—in the face of so much suffering and loss of life, I have faith that good will win in the end… that we are meant to learn once again that evil has no chance of prevailing when there is still so much good in this world.

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What moves you?

It’s a typical day.

Same old. Same nine-to-five routine. Same rush-hour headaches, same group of maniac drivers on the road… when… all of a sudden, my attention is gripped by the sight right in front of me—mother nature’s magnificent ink pots of ruby, magenta, russet and amber spilling to stain the deep blue of the sky—right there before my eyes, waiting patiently to be noticed. In awe, I detour away from the traffic to a quiet road, park my car, and sit in worship of such a perfect sight.


When I see something that moves me like this, I am compelled to stop and take notice… and write about it. Everything about a sunset—the amalgamation of colour, the serene sense of peace it represents, the powerful expanse, the pull of it—is all too special not to be noticed and revered.

Writers have an all-consuming need to translate what moves us into words. When we see something that stirs our feelings, we simply can’t keep quiet about it. If we see something that makes us happy, we must write about the source of our happiness. If we see something that makes us sad—oh woe is the story we’ll write. If we see something that makes us angry—well, let’s just say it’s wise not to mess with a writer because you just might find yourself the subject of a very spirited editorial in a newspaper or other venue. We don’t just see things, we feel them to the core. Which drives our need to write.
If you’ve been down with a case of writer’s block or caught in a mood rut, perhaps you need to rub your eyes and take a fresh look around. It’s all too easy to lose sight of the simple yet astonishing beauty blooming in front of our noses every day, when our sights are ever-focused instead on the hustle and bustle of daily life.

A fat black and yellow bumble bee darting into and out of a clump of blossoms; the metallic flecks that sparkle in an otherwise plain stone; a lone ripple on the calm face of a pond made by the paddling of a mallard duck and her babies; the bouncing pigtails of a little girl playing hopscotch; cream-puff clouds on a blueberry sky. So simple, so precious, so easy to miss.


How many sights do you pass by each day without taking notice—sights that have the power to move you?

Open your peepers. There are miracles everywhere.

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