Posts Tagged ‘grief’

The nature of things

November 4, 2014

Nine days ago my wonderful, beloved uncle died of cancer. Last Friday I stood by his coffin, spread with native wildflowers (tea tree and gum blossoms) and a little bunch of late season forget-me-nots, and read from Thoreau’s Walden and Marcus Aurelius’ Meditations.

V:13

I am made up of the causal and the material. Neither of these will disappear into nothing, just as neither came to be out of nothing. So every part of me will be assigned its changed place in some part of the universe, and that will change again into another part of the universe, and so on to infinity.

XII:21

It is the nature of all things to change, to perish and be transformed, so that in succession different things can come to be.

XII:32

What a tiny part of the boundless abyss of time has been allotted to each of us – and this is soon vanished in eternity.

I will miss him so much.

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Something unexpected

July 14, 2014

“Something quite unexpected has happened. It came this morning early. For various reasons, not in themselves at all mysterious, my heart was lighter than it had been for many weeks. For one thing, I suppose I am recovering physically from a good deal of mere exhaustion. And I’d had a very tiring but very healthy twelve hours the day before, and a sounder night’s sleep; and after ten days of low- hung grey skies and motionless warm dampness, the sun was shining and there was a light breeze. And suddenly at the very moment when, so far, I mourned H. least, I remembered her best. Indeed it was something (almost) better than memory; an instantaneous, unanswerable impression. To say it was like a meeting would be going too far. Yet there was that in it which tempts one to use those words. It was as if the lifting of the sorrow removed a barrier.”

 

C. S. Lewis, A Grief Observed, HarperCollins, 2009: 44-45.

Dispossession

October 23, 2009

“Let’s face it. We’re undone by each other. And if we’re not, we’re missing something. If this seems so clearly the case with grief, it is only because it was already the case with desire. One does not always stay intact. It may be that one wants to, or does, but it may also be that despite one’s best efforts, one is undone, in the face of another, by the touch, by the scent, by the feel, by the prospect of the touch, by the memory of the feel. And so when we speak about my sexuality or my gender, as we do (and as we must), we mean something complicated by it. Neither of these is precisely a possession, but both are to be understood as modes of being dispossessed, ways of being for another, or, indeed, by virtue of another.”

Judith Butler, Undoing Gender