February 6th, 2008

This quote makes me think of John Keats’s poem “Ode on a Grecian Urn“:

In the common words we use every day, souls of past races, the thoughts and feelings of individual men stand around us, not dead, but frozen into their attitudes like the couriers in the garden of the Sleeping Beauty.

– Owen Barfield, author (1898-1997)

February 6th, 2008

This quote makes me think of John Keats’s poem “Ode on a Grecian Urn“:

In the common words we use every day, souls of past races, the thoughts and feelings of individual men stand around us, not dead, but frozen into their attitudes like the couriers in the garden of the Sleeping Beauty.

– Owen Barfield, author (1898-1997)

but not forgotten

February 4th, 2008

My grandmother mentioned today that she recently visited my grandfather’s grave. It’s still strange to me that he has a grave. His death in July was a shock to all of us; Grandpa was always very active and even went to water aerobics with my grandmother the day after the massive heart attack that we later found out was the reason he’d felt “puny” on Tuesday. (“Puny” = “sick”- some Southernisms I love.) Four days later he was gone. I was in Germany and didn’t realize the situation was serious – heart attacks and death are things that happen to other people’s grandfathers, and Thursday night he was awake and joking around – until my mom told me that my aunt and uncle were flying in from the west coast. Fourteen hours later I was on a plane out of Munich; he died before I landed in Atlanta.

It still catches me by surprise. It’s been a long time since I lived in Arkansas and Grandpa was part of my everyday life, so sometimes I forget. The first time I was in Arkansas after his funeral was over Christmas; I felt a little envy for my relatives who still live in the area and thus had at least partially gotten used to being in my grandparents’ house without him there. I would be out running and suddenly realize that nobody ever recorded the hilarious stories he could always tell with a perfectly straight face, or that I would never see him in his overalls battling squirrels again. (He’s probably not all that upset about not battling squirrels; the critters who always ate all the fruit on his trees were the closest thing my grandfather had to an enemy.)

I thought about Grandpa a lot this weekend, especially during President Hinckley’s funeral. Two wonderful, beloved men have gone home.

Perception

February 1st, 2008

Last April 23 I was excited for Shakespeare’s birthday and wanted to have some kind of commemorative event, preferably involving pastries and/or recitations of favo(u)rite sonnets. When I mentioned this to a new acquaintance, he said, “You know what this tells me about you?”

Expecting something like “You really are a certified nerd,” I said, “What?”

“You’ll use any excuse to throw a party.”

Stunned, this Myers-Briggs 89% introvert blinked a few times and could think of nothing to say.

I wonder how frequently I completely misread others’ actions and motives?