Thursday, January 11, 2018

Good Bones

Several people have sent me links to Nora Krug's Washington Post essay on Maggie Smith's poem "Good Bones"- you know, the one that begins "Life is short/ Though we keep it from our children" (sorry, no link- still hypertext challenged).

Although I agree with everything she says, and recommend the essay, which also features Smith reading from the poem, I am more cynical.

I think we don't tell them how short life is because they wouldn't-- couldn't-- believe it

UPDATE: Aaah, here:


Anonymous said...

Thanks for the prompt Steve - Message for us all to "OUR World" here!


Sierra Muse said...

“We keep it from our children” - the theme in Bones. Perhaps this is why children grow up absolutely certain they’re smarter than their pathetic parents, convinced that mom and dad are just plain ignorant of what’s going on in the real world? And, conversely, why parents perceive their children to be little angels of innocence without one dark thought in their sweetly haloed heads? The arrogance of youth and the naïveté of old age alike. From a very tender age, maybe three or four, I was keenly aware and obsessively terrified of death. I had nightmares of grim reapers in many guises. Now that I’m old - not so much terrified as just mindful and watchful. No nightmares. Stephen, you’re about the same age as I when my mother died, but no age has a warranty for grief’s devastation. With my father’s death I was inconsolable, but with the loss of my mother I became an orphan. My mother also was an artist and both my parents excelled at many things. Such a legacy can be more daunting than inspiring for many of us who struggle to achieve, but you may be an exception, Stephen. Your book, Eagle Dreams, just arrived from Amazon. Love the cover art. No doubt tonight will be another sleepless night - once begun, Eagle Dreams won’t be set aside until it’s finished. Or, I may decide it’s too good not to be savored at a slower pace. It’s reassuring to read your many recent blog postings. It really eases concerns about your health and welfare, and I sincerely hope the loss of your mother isn’t an insurmountable setback, as profoundly sad as it has to be. Bits and pieces of me, like tattered Tibetan prayer flags, seem to be caught up and carried off with every death endured and soul taking flight of those I’ve loved. We all become tattered ghosts of our former selves if we live long enough. So, I’m glad to know you’re still in the here and now for all of us anticipating your next book, article, or blog posting - something worth reading and pondering.

Steve Bodio said...

Excellent commentary Sierra and strIkes me as all true.

Nightmares and hyper awarenes of death always for nme, exacerbated but not causewd bt Irish- style (I will laborate on that STYLE soon) Catholic upbringing. No ghost yet..

Would you drop me your snail mail again? I have it but have been organizing, always fatal to order...