Thursday, September 11, 2008

This is the hour of lead or, Things that come to mind

After great pain a formal feeling comes--
The nerves sit ceremonious like tombs;
The stiff Heart questions--was it He that bore?
And yesterday--or centuries before?

The feet, mechanical, go round
A wooden way
Of ground, or air, or ought,
Regardless grown,
A quartz contentment, like a stone.

This is the hour of lead
Remembered if outlived,
As freezing persons recollect the snow--
First chill, then stupor, then the letting go.

~ Emily Dickinson


There are truths that can only be discovered thorugh suffering or from the critical vantage point of extreme situations.

~ Ignacio Martin-Baro, S.J.

Faced with death of those they love, these characters of mine don’t seek some vague afterlife. What they seek, what they demand, against all reason, is the return of the loved one in all his or her familiarity, ‘the profile and the grace,’ as Lorca called it, ‘the answers quick and keen, the honest look,’ in Millay’s poem. My characters, my fictional Catholics, understand the Church’s promise of eternal life, but nevertheless find it lacking. For what they really want is life returned to them in all its magnificence and love and heartbreaking detail. Life uncompromised by death, death utterly defeated. Anything else is unacceptable.

~ Alice McDermott


emmapeelDallas said...


ppolarbear said...

beautiful thoughts.
I wish they were not true for you today.

Carol said...

Hauntingly beautiful quotes, GG. I'm just sorry they are fitting for you but hope that they give you some solace in knowing that you aren't alone in these feelings and thoughts. Hugs and prayers continue to flow from here.

Kathryn J said...

You are in my thoughts and prayers. I'm having the most trouble with the second one - a chance at truth does not help me wrap my mind around this tragedy.

"PS" (a.k.a. purple) said...

I hope the words you quoted help you to form your own words in the days to come.

Juniper said...

(((gannet girl)))

Jennifer said...

I am awed and inspired by how you are accompanying yourself on this journey of such exquisite pain. In the face of the worst--the absolute worst--you are not abandoning yourself. In this, you are a shadow reminder of the great presence of God. She is with you always. Prayers for your family....

Cynthia said...

Yes, yes and yes. My love, my thoughts, my prayers and God's grace to you.

more cows than people said...


Stratoz said...

“Hope is the thing with feathers, that perches in the soul, and sings the tune without words, and never stops at all.” Emily Dickinson

Rev SS said...

your sharing in this and previous post are such beautiful blessings for all of us who are praying for you

mompriest said...

((GG)) holding you and your family in my prayers.