Wishes for the end of the year 2021 Giuseppe Circelli
Are you familiar with those recurring dreams that regularly keep us company in our sleep and then, upon awakening, leave us in the bewilderment of a nightmare or in an aura of strange confusion? Even in certain circumstances of our life, certain thoughts come to mind, always the same, that we blurt out as if they were pearls of wisdom, whereas instead we should ask ourselves if they are not those many clichés that we automatically repeat almost parrotlike . Over the course of the year, the Christmas break also marks the moment when the end and the beginning touch each other to become one; and it is precisely in this period that the refrain of clichés inevitably surfaces on our lips, with the precision of a Swiss watch, to mark the hours of the year that leaves us and acts as an antiphon for what is to come: the antiphon that also in the coming year will continue to be the same refrain of the past years and will recur also afterwards as if it were still new! Isn’t this also like the recurring magic of Christmas? Let’s hope the new year will be better!: that’s it, this is the cliché sentence upon which the royal crown rests! How many years now have we been repeating this on a regular basis? For how many more years will we repeat it? We will wish this pearl of wisdom for a lifetime because we cannot give up on the desire for an extra gear right now, it’s the heritage that the old year is leaving to the new and that the past is doing to the future; and every year it will be routine to forget the present for a few moments in order to return to the nostalgia of the past so as to dive into the aspirations for the future, that we hope, will last for one hundred more years. Fortunately, on certain days of this holiday period, we ate lentils or wore red clothes because doing so could bring good luck, a lot of well-being and a lot of health. And here we are with another gem of our pearls of wisdom that condition our festive customs. We have already forgotten that in November, when we went to deliver a requiem to the deceased, we noticed, there in the cemetery, the smiling faces of people much, much younger than us. And we have already forgotten some dutiful visits to the hospital, where in contrast, we felt lucky for our good health compared to the many pains and diseases suffered there. Meanwhile, here in the world it is time to think about the Christmas of the Unconquered Sun, the Christmas of the Lord, the Christmas of the New Year; it is time then, here in the world,to wish each other all that health and all that well-being that we enjoy in abundance ...and that we take for granted! Christmas 2019, Christmas 2020, Christmas 2021: here they really are, the years in which the clichés seem to fit perfectly. The meandering of an invisible being was enough to take our breath away, to seal our mouths, to make us hope "for real », for a BETTER YEAR. It has been three years since it got worse; and it can’t get worse in the true sense of the word, given the current times and the new COVID-19 attack. The Coronavirus broke out and it was thought that there could be nothing worse; we thought the delta variant could knock out our thoughts and our health and our very life; here comes the attractive omicron variant, here among us now to make us reflect on a worse, still worse than the same worst: the omicron, I repeat once again, is only at the center of the greek alphabet! Here it is, therefore, that the time now is truly appropriate for us to wish each other a truly BETTER YEAR ... and so be it!
On the podium of Covidity Giuseppe Circelli. Oct. 2020

A second wave of the Coronavirus had been taken for granted, albeit not with absolute certainty. And this autumn, that has just begun, the relapse has appeared in various countries, targeting young people as well: it has also come to caress the shoulders of the promising green age!

But let’s try to fine-tune what occurred, specifically to human behavior, between the first and second phase of Covid 19. Meanwhile, it should be emphasized that medicine, well supported by previous similar experiences and by giant leaps made by science, has been able to efficiently counteract the attacks of the disease, even though it has not yet found a suitable vaccine to eradicate it completely. This is almost illusory because the only remedy for certain evils lies in living with them or in the hope of a possible reproduction of antibodies. That said, I would like to compare this devastating covidity to a competitive race and put the protagonists of their respective medals on the three steps of the podium. The highest step belongs to the medical personnel who have done their utmost to help the infected even at the cost of their own lives; to them, therefore, the deserved honour of the gold medal and the warm applause of our gratitude!

For its part, apparently, even the adult and senile generational band has done its part to avoid engulfing the traffic towards the afterlife. Partly because it is prudently advised by the children, partly out of obedience to the new security measures, partly also out of fear of being truly embraced by a dead sister ... we elderly and mature people have been, more or less, a good example in handling this unfortunate dark time; and we can be proud of having been able to postpone until later the day of our passage at the gates of heaven. And, as you may have understood, I would like to assign second place on the podium precisely to the category of these good people: the silver medal, therefore, on the chest of the wisdom that kept the situation under control with calm and reflection.

I guess you are curious to know who I put on the third step of the podium; Well, I hung the bronze medal around the neck of the youthful and carefree. Dear young people, ever since the coronavirus appeared on earth you have been the guardian angels of grandparents and parents most subject to the attack of the disease. Do you remember the shopping done for them and left on the doorstep? And those affectionate greetings launched from the street through showy flying kisses? You have been truly wonderful in taking care of your old folks with diligent care and filial affection! But won't it be that your asymptomatic condition has made you risk too much? With the arrival of autumn, in fact, the predicted second wave has really occurred and has also targeted you youngsters who, rightly or wrongly, were under the illusion of being almost privileged. Could it be that your enthusiasm has made you underestimate the parameters of the situation? Everywhere in the world there has been a certain neglect on your part in implementing the necessary security measures; everywhere in the world, the euphoria of fun and grouping together has led you to neglect social distancing and the use of masks. Could this have not been your way of behaving so impulsively that it almost borders on unconsciousness? In fact, will it not be precisely this carelessness of yours that has weighed down the flow of this unfortunate 2020 year?

Since here we go again, let's hope for the best and go back to dreaming again of the serene rainbow of "everything will be fine"!

Praying in covidinity Giuseppe Circelli, Oct. 2020

Due to this virus, places of worship were among the first to close their doors and among the last to reopen them; all this has led us to keep in touch with the Almighty in a way, and it should be said, completely «virtual».

It was only a few months ago that I too, at the call of its bells, went to Maria Ausiliatrice parish for my first post-Covid return to church: for now I prefer to go to the less crowded five o’clock afternoon mass. Precluded by colored cords, in many rows of benches, it is forbidden to sit down due to the new social distancing rules; despite this, the presence at mass, like the weight on the moon, is still half of one half. What is wrong with you, my dear people, are you afraid of contagion even in the house of God? Come on, find courage: I think the Lord, at least, keeps His abode well disinfected! On entering, I take my place and, with a mask on, like all the faithful, I glance around. Above, on two shelves on either side of the presbytery, the Madonna on one side and St. Joseph on the other: the mother and father of Jesus; all around the vast nave, in the mosaics of the stained glass windows, the salient facts of the passage of Jesus on earth; to the left of those who may look at the salient crucifix, their gaze is immediately attracted to the Risen One illuminated by the powerful rays of a radiant sun! With arms outstretched to the faithful, the beloved Son seems to say: «I am the way, the truth and the life».

But what has humanity been doing for about two and a half thousand years? What moments and what actions has the mortal son of man taken as an example to make himself deserving of the promised kingdom? For ease or convenience, humanity immediately took the shortcut; it discarded renunciations and sacrifices and proudly set out on the path that leads to glory; it avoided the shadows and bathed in the light; without passing through Golgotha it suddenly climbed Mount Tabor, not considering that this ride could cost it dearly: it set the splendor, but the sudden glare blinded it! The dazzled sight has lost control of its things and has no longer been able to manage the times of the work at hand; it fell into confusion and, in front of the test tubes in its laboratory, instead of pressing the key of life, it typed that of death, blaming the covid for the darkness that came to obscure the sky above its head.

At Maria Ausiliatrice, after the «ite missa est», you no longer leave by the main entrance, but you have to do it from the side ones that lead into the parking lot; following the arrows for the exit on the left you have to go under the crucifix and cross the chapel of the mothers with the children: will it be that to become good, humanity must repent and return to childhood again?

But let us not forget that humanity is not an abstract term: humanity is each of us!

Dearest Coronavirus,

I am writing these few lines to thank you for having ordered humans to lower their heads towards the ground and to look up at the sky. Each man had gotten to the point where, almost as if he considered himself an eternal-father on earth, strutted by his thirst for power and proud of his desire for progress; proud of his inventive genius, he even went so far as to challenge God in space flights that have polluted the very air he breathes. Thanks to you, however, humanity has almost become wiser; if you had not come to torment us, perhaps we would never have appreciated the greatness of our medicine, the wonderful gifts of our doctors, the generosity of those who do their best for others in hospitals; nor would we have ever noticed the altruism of those who put themselves at the service of others even at the cost of their own lives: and of these guardian angels of our public health system! Thank you for giving us the opportunity to take into consideration the availability of a good man who sympathizes with his fellowman ... finally to become his neighbor! Thank you also because, with this peremptory "stay at home", in this silence that seems to speak to the soul, you made us reevaluate, even if one hears about some marital dissensions that have yielded extra income in some law firms, the warmth of the domestic hearth, the affections in the family, the beauty of living those little things that the trends of society had made us forget; you almost invited us to rediscover the innocence of that child in us! Thanks also for the fact that you are suggesting to society the idea of restructuring the labour system, trying to give also much more priority and importance to a work done at home, to what has already taken the "telecommuting" coat of arms; meanwhile, in these dark days, it seems that some humble jobs are becoming the most necessary. Meanwhile, a personal thank you also from me: if it hadn't been for you, perhaps I wouldn't have stayed here at home to collaborate on this "Flash, culture at your fingertips", or would I have written you the two previous poems nor this letter that I have just written to you. Moreover, you also gave me the opportunity to offer my gratitude to CFMB with affection, which through its mythical radio waves gladdens the oncoming wave of melancholy, caused by you, trying to remove the thought of your inappropriate visit from our homes trying to chase away from our homes the thought of your inappropriate visit.

On this premise, I will immediately tell you that you are a coward: why don't you find the courage to be seen face to face in order to give us the opportunity to find the right antivirus to crush you? But don't worry too much: our efficient researchers are already at work and sooner or later the victory will be ours as is the case of many of your other predecessors. Excuse me if I make you aware, but frightened and intimidated by your virulence, I would like you to disappear forever from our beloved land and wish that you never return. Yes, this is what I hope wholeheartedly and I hope it will happen as soon as possible! On the other hand, however, I also have a hunch that as soon as you disappear, humans can return to being « homo homini lupus » of all time! You are making more victims than the two world wars combined, you are killing more people than any other epidemic in the past. Stop, please, because in order to treat the infected, emergency hospitals have to be built extended emergency rooms, not to mention that there are no more places in cemeteries and it is inhuman to have to choose between who to let die and who to save! We no longer have tears left to cry so please stop, we have no space to pray, nor freedom to embrace them to say goodbye: you force us to cremate the remains in solitude and without the comfort of any relative! At the very least, stop ranting even against the good Samaritans and the diligent nurses who care for the brothers you have infected. I am increasingly aware that you are also paralyzing all kinds of business and all types of commerce; will it not be, that once you and your scourge have passed, don’t you think that the profit hungry tycoons will make the poor pay for lost earnings? Speaking of profit, isn’t it true that you were able to propagate yourself so quickly precisely because the "priests of greed" did not promptly report your "baptismal outfit"? Before going further, allow me to give a firm handshake to the media around the world who keep us informed of your misdeeds and, at the same time, to give some comfort to our spirit; in fact through your own fault, churches and places of worship have become the first not to be frequented; a heartfelt thanks to you therefore, radio and television operators, for making us spend, among other things, the past Easter celebrations as good Christians: making us accompany the Lord up to Golgotha and then show him risen from the Holy Sepulcher. As for you, cruel bacterium, you are not saddened in fact, unique in the history of the Church and telecommunications, of having forced them to talk to us about a pope, dressed in white, walking alone meditating with slow steps, like a shepherd deprived of his flock in St. Peter's Square under His empty window? You do not have a heart and therefore you cannot understand what it means for them to tell us about deserted cities and loneliness in the world. Since we're here, do you know why else, albeit ironically, I feel like thanking you? For trying to devalue "dirty money"; as long as you are here with us in various stores, you cannot pay in cash, you have to pay either with Interact or with a credit card; cash can infect and here, finally for the first time in human history, dirty money has been banned ... but, of course, so to speak. However, you are welcome for the greeting of the many students you made happy by preventing them from going to school. Fortunately, many of them have tried to study and educate themselves through the telematics offered us by modern science and technology; on the contrary, if so many others gave up, the fault is yours; which is why, shame on you to have right now besmirched the future generation. How sad our weekends without football and our days without fun and entertainment! At this point I don't know how to define you: I would like to call you what certain brutes shout when insulting the referees in the field, so I don't do it for decency. You even whistled for the maximum punishment even to sport and its enthusiastic events that attract exultant crowds. If, coincidentally, you did it to punish the hooligans who only generate unrest and guerrilla warfare, well I can't really blame you.

Seriously, the earth is still terrified of your passage and, day after day, the outbreaks of your stay are still spreading. But, as I already told you, you will not have won it, and on balance, united and committed as we are, we will defeat you! This being the case, I would like to give you some advice, I would like to make a little suggestion, I would like to offer you a humble prayer; but don't get angry and try to understand me. If you still have something against us and your mission is not over yet and you have other victims to sacrifice, why don't you take a good look at your conscience and do direct yourself to those who really deserves it. Leave the poor people and those without malice alone and go to those who, unconsciously, have allowed you to be able to move freely left and right; leave the innocent people alone and go to give a beating in the heads of those jackals who exploit these moments of confusion and disarray to make shameful and shameless gains; leave us lambs alone and go to those who are already preparing to become "wolves for other men"! I end this text by asking you to listen to me because, if you grant this wish of mine, sweeping away the wickedness and placing the colorful rainbow of the « ça va bien aller » on the horizon, the people who will remain after the passage of this disastrous storm of yours will be exactly those of that better world for which we all hope: do this grace and give us, finally, the joy of intoning, as soon as possible, the "Te Deum" of thanks! And good-bye for ever.

P.S. Thinking with gratitude of all those who fight you in the front line without even paying attention to their own safety, I allow myself to invite those who are now in the "ultra" category to become spontaneous volunteers: not of sport, but of age. Taking life with philosophy, I would like you to make a compromise with them. Assuming that each of them can be worth the life of a small group of young people, are you willing to move away from these promising youngsters and get closer, if you are really obliged to do so, to some already over elderly? And then, my venerable and wise white-haired scourge, accept the challenge and demonstrate to the whole world that there is no age to become a hero. If this imaginary boat that I threw on the high seas reaches the port, you will have the merit of going down in history as the only plague that has rejuvenated humanity on the face of the earth!

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