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OpEdNews Op Eds    H2'ed 3/29/21

Rise Up, Say the Birds to the Bread

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Irish Soda Bread
Irish Soda Bread
(Image by my_amii from flickr)
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It was early morning on St. Patrick's Day and I was sitting in the kitchen eating a few slices of delicious Irish Soda Bread. My wife had made it at 5 A.M. while I was still in bed half-asleep, but its smell wafting through the rooms induced me to get up. From outside the window came the sound of mourning doves cooing and crows playing their little raw saxophones.

It's not every day that such an invitation to awaken arrives through the air. Some people are never so invited and others refuse the call, but the bread is always rising, if only we knew.

The bread is always rising.

The Irish soda bread's smell and taste with my coffee was extremely sensuous and brought me back to our time in Ireland long before the world was locked down by the machine people into a virtual world in front of screens because of coronavirus. The bread was real, not virtual. I felt as though for a few slow hours I would luxuriate in the silence and allow my mind to go on vacation and wander through the narrow lanes of reverie and memory.

My wife, Jeanne Lemlin, a James Beard Award winning cookbook writer, had created the recipe after visiting the bakery department at Field's supermarket in Skibbereen, County Cork, where she observed Dennis McSweeney and his staff preparing their breads in the early morning. Here's the recipe so you can join me in the breaking of the bread.

I was returning to my Irish rebel roots, thinking of how my ancestors rose up against their oppressors, the British colonizers. How those Irish rebels became an inspiration for colonized people around the world. How the enslaved and oppressed need the bread of hope.

The bread is always rising. Can you hear its music?

By being lost in reverie, I was violating the terms the machine people have laid down for us to start and spend and end each day in fear and trembling.

They are the experts who, as the English essayist Adam Philips has said, "construct the terror, and then the terror makes them expert."

Contrarian that I am. I refuse to be terrorized, now or later. For twenty years, the U.S. government "experts" have lied about Muslim terrorists coming to get us as they have killed millions of innocent Muslims around the world.

Now it's an invisible virus that has arrived to slay us.

Of course, the Russians are always coming to get us, but they are very slow; they've been coming for at least eighty years but the lies about them continue. Here they come again!

It is just an odd happenstance that each of these three terrors has in its turn resulted in further losses of freedoms and increased "emergency" powers for the government. We all know why the caged bird sings.

Freedom is under assault.

Outside on a large tree I see nine black vultures looking my way. Behind them in the sky are another four or five soaring majestically. The birds have recently returned after wintering farther south. They roost in the tall pine streets on the other side of the house. They are beautifully ugly.

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Edward Curtin is a widely published author. His new book is Seeking Truth in A Country of Lies - His website is

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