Slipping below the water line

by Yule Heibel on June 2, 2004


maria June 4, 2004 at 3:07 am

Hmm … I think I know what you mean. Makes me think of this poem by Stevie Smith:

Not Waving but Drowning

Nobody heard him, the dead man,
But still he lay moaning:
I was much further out than you thought
And not waving but drowning.

Poor chap, he always loved larking.
And now he’s dead
It must have been too cold for him his heart gave way,
They said.

Oh, no no no, it was cold always
(Still the dead one lay moaning)
I was much too far out all my life
And not waving but drowning.

Odd little poem, I know … but yea, there is that sense of the ice breaking up in it, as there is in your picture – and these cracks in the ice are not always the sign of spring, are they now?

maria June 4, 2004 at 3:12 am

Oops, the poem didn’t break right, Here it is again (I hope with the right line breaks!):

Not Waving but Drowning

by Stevie Smith

Nobody heard him, the dead man
But still he lay moaning:
I was much further out than you thought
And not waving but drowning.

Poor chap, he always loved larking
And now he’s dead
It must have been too cold for him his heart gave way
They said.

Oh, no no no, it was cold always
(Still the dead one lay moaning)
I was much too far out all my life
And not waving but drowning

Yule Heibel June 4, 2004 at 1:21 pm

That’s a great poem, Maria, which I hadn’t heard before, so thanks for posting it. I was thinking of Morrissey’s song (as per entry title) when I wrote this (click on the picture for the lyric/ story, etc.), but the Stevie Smith piece fits well also.

maria June 5, 2004 at 12:42 am

Since I posted my comment, I did discover the link from the picture to your actual post about slipping below the water line. I guess, in quoting the poem, I was trying to vent my own mood, too … what with these “chilblains” of the brain (to misappropriate another poet – this time, Emily Dickinson) in these icy times!

Yule Heibel June 5, 2004 at 1:50 am

Well, you know Maria, I’m thinking of coming up for air. When I went to the cops on June 2, I was promised that a certain Sgt. Cr… of the Oak Bay Police would call me by June 3, and when he didn’t, I called him today (June 4), and was promised that he’d call me back, and he still hasn’t (he’s on duty tonight) — and this is supposed to the person at the police who is interested in stopping hate crimes. “It’s so funny you’ll kill yourself laughing.” Ooops, another Morrissey line.

And still one keeps kicking against the pricks. Yeah, I know it says that it’s not sensible to do so (the Bible says so), but, but, but… It’s one of those images Shakespeare liked, and he lived in England, that green and pleasant land, far far away from cacti and tumbleweeds. Guess he knew that pricks are everywhere.

Oh Aqualung.

Mike Golby June 5, 2004 at 6:25 pm

Thanks for your courage and strengh in responding as you have done, Yule. Your voice carries a message as clear as any lyrics or poem to which you or we might point and it is the strongest possible counter to the venomous hatred of these vile little (you said it) pricks. I know, not having experienced the pain of random hatred, that it’s easy for me to say this, but I will anyway. If your voice is stilled, they are emboldened. Quite how one exposes and disposes of people like this, I don’t quite know. I would hope that, in Canada as in South Africa, hate speech is treated as a criminal offence and that one day, these bastards will see nothing but the inside of a jail. As for your recounting of your experiences to date, I must say both posts were moving and strangely uplifting to read. Speaking out is definitely your calling.

Yule Heibel June 7, 2004 at 1:04 am

Thanks Mike, I appreciate your comment a lot. I’m feeling kinda bagged right now, but I think I should work up some steam about something and restart this blog. Sex should be a good topic. Sex and politics, even better: is there anything else?

Hmm, Susie Bright has put a bee in my bonnet; maybe tomorrow I’ll have time to post some thoughts… 😉

jr June 8, 2004 at 11:54 am

I hope you do post. You may be the smartest person I read. I miss your posts.

Yule Heibel June 10, 2004 at 12:47 am

Thank you so much, jr: that’s a very generous and encouraging thing to say. My
long hiatus hasn’t, fortunately, been due entirely to the g-d Nazis are
shutting me up (although they did do a good job in depressing me just
enough), but I do feel strangely alienated and limbo-landish. It’s a
technology problem, too: my iBook, which I guess was the Lemon of the
year, now has such a wonky display that it only works when I open the
lid as far as is possible. The slightest shift in the screen (adjusting
it for light reflection, for example) makes it go black: it has to stay
open to the furthest point. It’s very tiresome to use this computer
now, especially anytime during the day when a room is flooded with
natural light. I should have it fixed, but Apple has such high repair
prices. It’s nearly $500 Cdn to fix the display (even though it’s
probably just worn-out cables), and I can’t afford to do that right
now. …I can spend $60 on my kid’s piano lesson with the best teacher,
but spending money on myself and my luxurious blogging-surfing-reading
habit, …well! That’s an extra, right?, so it’s not a justified
expense to get that gizmo fixed…

PS: actually, now the screen flickers and shakes all the time, too, so
I think this means that the display is just about ready to do its
swansong.  Oh well, there’s always pen and paper, I guess. 😉

Kate S. June 12, 2004 at 6:11 pm

Oh dear; another victim of hatred. I just read on Joel’s blog that you had received hate mail. I will have to go back through your posts. I’m sorry I haven’t been around lately — the nice weather keeps me outside, the bad weather keeps me inside and stiff, and I’m also in that limbo-land you mentioned.

Just know that in the world, particularly in our blog world, there are many more supporters than detractors and we have love and respect on our side: things of which those dark souls know nothing.

fp June 14, 2004 at 7:04 pm

…tapping foot impatiently and waiting for next post…

Mike Golby June 16, 2004 at 5:21 am

Frank’s inclined to do that… he’s an informational junkie and codependent. Watch out for him Yule, he’ll enable your reentry before you’re ready. Mind you, I think not. You’ll see him off. I’ll try find a war in which he can engage and get him off your back. That said, it’s fun having Frank on one’s back (metaphorically, I hasten to add), but he definitely needs another war. To this end, I have sent him to Sudan and charged him with the routing of the Janjaweed. The CIA is now pissed off with him and he has been transferred to a cage on a carrier at an undisclosed location in the Pacific. He will not trouble you for a while. Oh dear, I suppose I do share his sentiments…

Aaaahh… shiny black FBI shoes…

Shelley June 17, 2004 at 10:06 pm

Yule, take however long you need — Mr. Golby can deal with this Paynter creature. After all, He’s South African — a farmer from Wisconsin hasn’t a chance.

Hope you’re well.

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