Facebook, Instagram, Norman Rockwell paintings, Christmas letters ….
Such happy, shiny, idyllic, perfect images.

The crisis in Gaza, mass murders, racism, my own family of origin ….
Such devastating, tragic, brutal, sad realities.

How do we hold the realities of how we want things to be against the reality of what actually is?
This is a question for the poets, artists and musicians …

“Life is short and the world is at least half terrible, and for every kind stranger, there is one who would break you …. though I keep this from my children. I am trying to sell them the world. Any decent realtor, walking you through a real shithole, chirps on about good bones: This place could be beautiful, right? You could make this place beautiful.” This is part of Maggie Smith’s poem, “Good Bones”.

The painting above called “Communion” by Merrill Stanley shows the fear and trembling of being invited into the oneness with life and love and loss and hope.

The musical “Dear Evan Hansen” takes us on a journey through loneliness and connection.
“Even when the dark comes crashing through,
when you need a friend to carry you,
and when you’re broken on the ground,
you will be found”
“You will be Found” by Benj Pasek and Justin Paul.

Though life might look different than we had hoped, connecting to ourselves and each other is the call. You are not alone. You are seen and known. You are powerful and beautiful.

What if you take what you have, be who you are, use what you’ve got and make this place beautiful?