by Andrea Elizabeth

The term, persona non grata, is in my head this morning. I thought it meant someone who doesn’t have a sense of identity. Instead it means someone who is banished, I suppose, for having an unacceptable identity. Hermit monks banish themselves, both for believing their sins are unacceptable, and that the world system is unacceptable.

Some Russians believe that bell ringing drives out evil spirits. Lord have mercy when the microwave rings – even when pushing the buttons, when the clock chimes – especially at 12, when the alarm goes off, and when sirens sound. If I were St Herman, I’d wear heavy bells instead of chains. But I’m not. I used to like wearing a jingle bell at Christmas. I want to get a little jingle bracelet.