A Semi-Colon Moment

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From Writer Unboxed:

I was asked to write something to mark the day—something to encourage a re-set as we turn the proverbial page on a difficult and divisive chapter in American history. But the truth is that I don’t know with certainty what this day will bring. I’m not writing this piece on January 20th, and at this point several outcomes seem possible, ranging from peaceful ideal to horrific.

What can be said of such a day, when so many different outcomes are imaginable?

It struck me that we give our protagonist a moment like this toward the end of a story—following a dark moment, there is resolution or there is an even darker moment.

It struck me that no matter what our protagonist experiences, there is an after, whether it’s happily-ever or not.

It struck me that we are—collectively—the protagonist of this moment in history.

Some believe something will end today. Period. But I think it’s safer to say something will change today; it will shift, marking the start of a new phase or chapter [semi-colon].

The semi-colon is a powerful marker of connection. Two ideas are so intrinsically bound that to exist as sentences beside one another without the marker is to weaken the idea. Whatever comes next, whatever happens today, it will be the cause of an effect we won’t know for a while. But make no mistake that our future—at least our most immediate future—will be tied to our now in a way we won’t be able to shake.

This is a semi-colon moment.

What do we do with the rubble of our time? How do we rebuild? What can be salvaged? What do we take from this moment and pull into our future? What’s on the other side of that semi-colon? What do we want to be on the other side of that semi-colon? To undo it all, to go back to “normal”? How wide is that gap, between reality and some impossible dream?

Link to the rest at Writer Unboxed