Saturday, July 05, 2008

When I have seen by Time's fell hand defac'd

This blog recently has been about the miracle of birth, about life, about joy. I've been doing my best to ignore the flip side, the endings that surround us in equal portion to the beginnings. I've avoided thinking about it in hopes of not feeling about it. You can't hide, though. In the very act of trying to duck-and-cover, the reminders are there, ingrained in everything we do.

Alongside Dr. Seuss, I read some Shakespeare to James. Not safe. Taking great joy in reading to the little bug the other day, I happened on this sonnet.

LXIV.

When I have seen by Time's fell hand defac'd
The rich-proud cost of outworn buried age;
When sometime lofty towers I see down-raz'd,
And brass eternal slave to mortal rage;
When I have seen the hungry ocean gain
Advantage on the kingdom of the shore,
And the firm soil win of the watery main,
Increasing store with loss, and loss with store;
When I have seen such interchange of state,
Or state itself confounded to decay;
Ruin hath taught me thus to ruminate—
That Time will come and take my love away.
This thought is as a death, which cannot choose
But weep to have that which it fears to lose.

Too close to home.

4 comments:

Kathy said...

Over time, almost 60 years, I have found that it is those things: life and love and joy that carry us through when there is loss. That doesn't mean that we ignore those things that could bring us loss, but that we put our faith in life, love, and joy so that we can overcome the sorrow that loss brings. Does that make since to you? Love you.

Kathy said...

Okay, I know, I'm a teacher for goodness sake! Does that make SENSE to you? Love, Mom

Josh said...

It's the only thing that makes sense. The trick is to believe it. I do, most of the time.

Hypatia said...

The first nine months and first few years, I heard a ton of cliche's, aphorisms, truisms, and stupid crap. There was one bit of sappiness that did stick with me though.

I guess this is from Elizabeth Stone (so says Google) “Making the decision to have a child is momentous. It is to decide forever to have your heart go walking around outside your body.”

I never felt so vulnerable and fragile as when I had children.

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