The first two postings to my blog, though dated September 6, 2017, were originally posted some time ago, deleted, and just now reposted. I quickly tired of following President Trump’s random and often ridiculous rants. (A tweet by itself is not a rant, of course, but a series of tweets on the same subject may be considered a rant.) And so I am refocusing my blog or, rather, broadening its scope. Open commentary is the goal I really had in my mind from the start. The title of my blog, “Caveats and Caviar,” conveys my intent to provide a spectrum of opinion from cautionary to celebratory posts. The subtitle, “Discerning the Truth,” is pompous, I know, but one must at least look for and work toward the truth in these days when the lines between what is and what is not are blurred.
We have just had a flash storm, rain so fine and dense that it turned the scene outside my window into an Impressionist painting. No doubt it is scouting the landscape for Hurricane Irma’s imminent thrashing. With Irma arriving so soon after the devastation of Hurricane Harvey in Texas and Louisiana and the flooding in Southeast Asia, I can only think of the biblical flood. If the rain that accompanied Harvey could cause such massive flooding in the time it lingered over Texas, just imagine what it could have done had it lasted forty days and forty nights! I recall the first hurricane I experienced in 1989 shortly after I moved to South Carolina. Living three hours from the coast, we frankly were not worried about the storm greatly affecting us. We were stunned by how far inland Hurricane Hugo raged.
If global warming and its effect on climate is not to blame, perhaps our storm weather is God’s warning that another great cleansing is coming. Here is a fitting poem by Robert Frost.
Once by the Pacific
Robert Frost (1928)
The shattered water made a misty din.
Great waves looked over others coming in,
And thought of doing something to the shore
That water never did to land before.
The clouds were low and hairy in the skies,
Like locks blown forward in the gleam of eyes.
You could not tell, and yet it looked as if
The shore was lucky in being backed by cliff,
The cliff in being backed by continent;
It looked as if a night of dark intent
Was coming, and not only a night, an age.
Someone had better be prepared for rage
There would be more than ocean-water broken
Before God’s last Put out the Light was spoken.
William Faulkner’s The Old Man, set in Mississippi during the flood of 1927, is another work of literature that reveals the great courage of humans and their will to survive and to help others survive in the midst of catastrophic events.