Hate, Love, Hate, Love


Blue Mood with Pegasus clouds racing across the sky. Delaware River at Red Bank Battlefield, National Park, NJ ©️ Merril D. Smith 2020

Monday Morning Musings:

“Your voices matter, your dreams matter, your lives matter. Be the roses that grow in the concrete.” –Angie Thomas, The Hate U Give

“There’s a saying in Hebrew, ‘No matter how dark the tapestry God weaves for us, there’s always a thread of grace.”—Mary Doria Russell, A Thread of Grace


Glowing ships on the aquamarine sea,

Moon and Venus shine their beacons–


Farewell night!

The moon smiles a crooked grin,


and Venus titters

such fools, these mortals be.




I hate everyone, she says to me.

Well, not you—not my family—


and I know what she means, because I feel it, too,

the constant barrage of evil and ignorance,


people who refuse to wear masks,

who spread misinformation,


and insist they’re not racist while sharing racist posts—

the people, who like black holes, swallow the light,


but not all of it.


Sigh. Breathe. Walk. Begin again—


as each day does–

the sun rises, even if we don’t see it


shining over the horizon

waking the world


again and again,

though some never awaken


to see the world around them,

its beauty


flowing on a river of hope

reflected over and over


Delaware River at Red Bank Battlefield, National Park, NJ. ©️Merril D. Smith 2020

a dream

of what was and what could be.


Some of the things I’ve seen on my morning walks this week:

These mushrooms that look like umbrellas set up for fairies.



Deer and red-tailed hawks this morning.


On Friday nights, we get together virtually with our children and their spouses. We light the Sabbath candles and share the things that we’re grateful for.

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Saturday night homemade pizza and movie night


Lots of baking

Merril’s Movie Club: We watched The Hate U Give. (Amazon Prime with an additional slight fee, but I believe it’s on other streaming platforms.) We both thought it was a very good movie, and I highly recommend it. It’s based on a YA novel of the same name. It gets very intense, but in a thoughtful, nuanced way. Here’s a review in The New Yorker. We finished Season 3 of Bordertown, which I mentioned last week. I’m happy that apparently Season 4 is in the works.

I’m rereading Mary Doria Russell’s A Thread of Grace, a historical novel set in WWII Italy. She’s an author who does her research, but also tells a good story with captivating characters. Another story that seems timely when read now.

And this–unconditional love.

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31 thoughts on “Hate, Love, Hate, Love

  1. I’m beginning to feel guilty. You’re out there strolling in the heat and humidity while I sit in the A/C and enjoyed your gorgeous photos. I’m happy we connected on Instagram, I get a double shot fix! Thanks for the lovely Monday Musing, Merrill.

    • You’re too funny, Jill! I sat out a couple days that were just too humid or rainy. Today, it’s actually nice, and we’re not even running the a/c. (Uh oh, now I’ve done it.). Anyway, thank you very much! 😀

  2. Yes, Merril. We have to find the love amidst all the hate that wants to take over. It’s up to us not to let it. I, too, understand your friend. It feels like it is so hard and exhausting to keep being the light sharer, trying to get rid of those black holes.
    Always a beautiful write on Mondays, enhanced by your gorgeous pictures.

  3. There’s a tired feel to this one, and a retreat into family and people who care. I can understand all that. There are so many ugly people in the world with their ugly messages. Take comfort in what you see around you, the things that don’t listen 🙂

  4. I’m feeling exhausted by the darkness too and some days everything is just so difficult. I don’t know where the light is exactly right now, but your words and photos always add some brightness to my day. (K)

  5. I wasn’t sure what to expect when I saw the title of your post come across my email. Your musings eloquently express this strange, ambivalent existence we seem to be caught up in, hopeful in one moment, filled with rage and despair in the next, then back to hoping again.

  6. I understand the sentiment. I, too, have days of feeling like I hate everyone. Then I see beauty somewhere — perhaps during my own walks or in your words and images — and the hate dissipates. You express all this so well in your musings. ❤

  7. I love the quotes, the words, the photos … I remember for what it’s worth that ‘indifference’ is the opposite of love. With hate there is at least energy that can be worked with – thanks Merril …

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