Predictably, the BOTEC team took it hard. In our Slack feed, I posted the final stanza of a favorite poem by Emily Dickinson:
After great pain, a formal feeling comes â€“
The Nerves sit ceremonious, like Tombs â€“
The stiff Heart questions â€˜was it He, that bore,â€™
And â€˜Yesterday, or Centuries beforeâ€™?
The Feet, mechanical, go round â€“
A Wooden way
Of Ground, or Air, or Ought â€“
A Quartz contentment, like a stone â€“
This is the Hour of Lead â€“
Remembered, if outlived,
As Freezing persons, recollect the Snow â€“
First â€“ Chill â€“ then Stupor â€“ then the letting go â€“
I don’t deal well with feelings. In the wake of tragedy, I ramp up activity, particularly things that will leave me with a sense of accomplishment. With due respect to the psychologists (Hi, Keith!) who will doubtless disagree, I do not find that talking helps. Maybe later, but probably not. I clean out closets, basements, pantries, when bad things happen. I remove dust from the top of each book with the little vacuum cleaner attachment. Yes, it gives me distance from the bad thing, but there is a pragmatic reason, too. Today you will not dither about discarding shoes that were expensive but hurt your feet. Today you will see clearly that you do not need a hedge trimmer since you hacked down the hedges after Martha Coakley’s loss to Charlie Baker. And exercise. I’m headed to the pool, now.