Wednesday 31 January 2018


It's the season of snow in our part of North America. In fact, I have another date with our snowblower this morning.

As I put on my hat with ear flaps, my face warmer, my heavy coat, my thick and lined gloves, and multi-layered, extremely warm boots, I can't help but think of conditions in Finland 100 years ago.

At this time in the winter of 1918, neighbours and friends were sorting themselves into sides. Red vs. White. Labourers vs. landowners/independent farmers/white-collar workers.

People had begun to talk about Finland in terms of "us" and "them." Helsinki had become the capital for the Reds. Vasa was the de facto capital of the White side.

And they'd begun to talk about fighting--how many, where, when. It had become apparent that young men would be conscripted to fight for the Whites.

In SILENCES, a group gathers in the basement of a church after a funeral. They share news. And they know that soon, they and their friends will be on a battlefield.

Without the kinds of cold-weather gear I put on this morning.