Portia Placino

Repository of my thoughts and images of art, literature, travel, and life.

Day 9, Red sweater and a dream of spring

“There’s a grief that can’t be spoken. There’s a pain goes on and on. Empty chairs at empty tables, now my friends are dead and gone. Here they talked of revolution. Here it was they lit the flame. Here they sang about tomorrow, and tomorrow never came.”

A man and a woman walk through the park together, holding hands. They pass an old woman sitting on a bench. The old woman is knitting a small, red sweater. The man begins to cry.

==========

The man thinks of spring. The promises of spring, the promises of new life. But it is a spring that never came. He broke down crying. Crying for his comrades. Dead. Lost. Unknown.

Is there still hope?

The old woman is knitting a small sweater, as if for a child. Perhaps her grandchild. What kind of life would that child face?

We live in a world as if slaves. The corruption, the poison, permeates in this world. The people lacked the empathy to feel, the will to fight. There is only resignation and acceptance.

Is change still possible?

That sweater is just right for the chill of spring. But will that spring ever come?

We’ve fought. We’ve lived. We’ve died.

It is still the same.

==========

The woman looks on as her husband cries. She held his shoulder, attempting to give him strength.

So much pain, so much sorrow.

Is there still hope?

I have him with me, free. But our lives are not truly free.

Is it time to go back to the barricades? Is it time to fight once again?

But we’ve lost so much. We’re lucky to be alive. Most of our comrades are dead. Or in hiding. Or attempting to live quiet lives as we are. But life is never really quiet.

The old woman is knitting a small sweater, as if for a child. It is a child that I shall never have. How could I, when our duties are elsewhere? This is no world for a child.

People are hungry. Uneducated. Oppressed.

Their spirits dead.

They no longer fight.

Those who fought are now broken.

It is no place for a child, for spring shall never come.

==========

The old woman looked on the couple. She continued knitting the small read sweater.

Red is the colour of love. Of hate. Of blood.

I love my country and I continue to hope.

I hate my oppressors and I continue to fight.

I have lost my family and comrades. Years of loss. And tears.

I grew old fighting, I will die fighting.

People may still care, as my grandchild cares.

My grandchild hears the story of battles. Of blood. Of barricades.

My grandchild shall learn.

There is hope.

There is change.

For now, we keep on fighting. We honour our losses.

We march.

And my grandchild shall wear this read sweater, forged of blood.

Spring shall come.

==========

“Do you hear the people sing? Singing a song of angry men? It is the music of a people who will not be slaves again! When the beating of your heart, echoes the beating of the drums. There is a life about to start when tomorrow comes!”

==========

I’ve been thinking about this prompt the entire day. But it was a busy day and I didn’t get the chance to sit on it until late tonight. I am still thinking about the student campaign/election happening on campus and I am seriously contemplating if any of them intend to serve the people beyond any political position or inclination. I certainly hope so, but the performance of politics breaks my heart as they continue to fall into the trap of popular taste.

This post, obviously, is inspired by Les Miserables. I still dream of a revolution in my country. I revolution that would change the inescapable system of corruption that we are currently trapped in. Though we continue to resist, sometimes resistance seems futile.

I also borrowed some ideas from Hito Steyerl’s I Dreamed a Dream: Politics in the Age of Mass Art Production. She performed that in Former West 2013, Berlin and it remains to be one of my favourite lectures. She talked about an art project that takes off from Les Miserables and waits of a spring that never came.

Advertisements

8 comments on “Day 9, Red sweater and a dream of spring

  1. Chow Kim Wan
    April 16, 2015

    My assignment was also in part inspired by Les Miz, but also a list of other musicals as well. I like your references/parallels to Marius and the students. When you discussed the color red, I was immediately reminded of the song ‘Red and Black’ from Les Miz. I love your post! And check out mine! My blog is full of musical theatre, including Les Miz! In fact, one of my previous assignments was also about Les Miz.

    • Portia Placino
      April 16, 2015

      Hi! Thank you for giving this a read. I will check your post too. It just occurred to me to write this up. I remember that song, I wonder why I didn’t think about it earlier. Thanks for mentioning it. 🙂

      • Chow Kim Wan
        April 17, 2015

        Haha no problem, you’re welcome! Les Miserables is a common topic on my blog; what other musicals do you like?

        • Portia Placino
          April 17, 2015

          Live broadway musicals get here about once a year and its quite expensive. I managed to watch Wicked, Phantom of the Opera, and Cats. I loved them all! I also watch the local theatre productions and their musicals are pretty great to. Its a livening experience. 🙂

          • Chow Kim Wan
            April 17, 2015

            Phantom, Cats, Wicked are all on my blog, as well as a couple of live musicals running on Broadway now. Do check them out!

            • Portia Placino
              April 17, 2015

              I will 🙂 Glad to meet someone who loves musicals! 🙂

  2. Wow…I love how you used Les Miserables as a basis for this. The characters are wonderful and they way you connected their thoughts was inspiring. I thoroughly enjoyed it, great job.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Information

This entry was posted on April 16, 2015 by in Portia's Narratives, Random Writings and tagged , , , , , , .

Archives

Categories

Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 1,572 other followers

Follow Portia Placino on WordPress.com

Instagram

Part 2 of shopping for allergen-free food, this time at Healthy Options. Funny how rice is the most important ingredient for most gluten-free product. We got some rice and quinoa snacks, rice pasta, and rice milk! Lol. I'm just gonna have to eat more rice. Will also try this gluten-free cereal. The trickiest and spendiest part is the cookie. Lots of gluten-free options, but they would have nuts and egg... Lots of vegan options but they would have gluten and nuts. Frustrating. Until I saw that allergy friendly cookie box. But sooo spendy, so I can't indulge on that too often. Onwards to this journey. After which, I will have to slowly reintroduce such allergens to baby and to myself as well. For now, we're all about no dairy, eggs, nuts, and gluten diet. #babynarratives #breastfeeding
Received a call from @thevegangrocerph because they saw my ig post and realized that their staff sent me the wrong cream cheese. They accidentally sent me a nut-based one, rather than this coconut-based one. Mistakes happen and I'm glad they care to call and correct the situation. The little one really does not like nuts, good thing I have not opened it yet. Whew. Looking forward to opening this, the closest I can get to cheese for now. I'm happy to see this is locally produced as well, like most of their products. Hopefully, we can give little one time to strengthen her immunity so later she can eat all kinds of food. #babynarratives #veganph
Ok, two days of intense discussion and what feels like a small fortune--here we are. @thevegangrocerph is great, they patiently answered all my questions and guided me to the products I am looking for. No-dairy and no-eggs mean that vegan would be the answer. But on top of that, I was also looking for no-gluten and no-nuts. So ordering was a very complex process. What I've got here is bread (I NEED bread), edamame pasta, rice noodles, dark chocolate cookies, dark chocolate cake, and coconut cream cheese. All of them have no dairy, egg, gluten, or nuts. I am not going vegan, I am not even trying to lose weight. I am just trying so damn hard to produce allergen-free breastmilk to help my baby along. She had eczema and is displaying allergic reactions. I already cleaned up my diet but not completely, with snacks of things here and there. So here I am, a month later, determined to hit every single possibility. Exhausting, but I will try every damn thing I can. Let's see what we can cook up with this. I am sooo dependent on bread and pasta--cutting them off will be the hardest of all, not to mention the desserts! The mini cake, it is my belated birthday cake. Let's hope for the little one to defeat her allergies! #babynarratives #veganph #breastfeeding
Tried to give her a blanket because she might be cold, but she thought it was just a big toy. Lol. Stormy day with little one is challenging, but we did get some smiles. #babynarratives
Thanks mommy @kkvinarao for sharing these vegan cookies! Made me feel so much better. Love, love, love desserts! Hay, it will be a long wait before I can eat dairy, etc again. Its so nice to have kakampi! Onwards to finding great allergen-free desserts! #babynarratives
Leia exploring soft sounds. Looks like she had fun. But she's exhausted after this game. Lol. She wanted to eat, then probably nap. #cdcidp #babynarratives
%d bloggers like this: