“I often fear tomorrow. What if I wake up tomorrow and don’t know who my husband is? What if I don’t know where I am or recognize myself in the mirror? When will I no longer be me? Is the part of my brain that’s responsible for my unique ‘me-ness’ vulnerable to this disease? Or is my identity something that transcends neurons, proteins, and defective molecules of DNA? Is my soul and spirit immune to the ravages of Alzheimers? I believe it is.” – Still Alice
I’ve been reading a lot lately, last year I hit my goal of 40 books in a year! This year I’m aiming for 50. That’s a ton of books to review, so instead I’ve decided to simply post a quote that stood out to me from each book. My first book completion of 2015 was Me Before You by Jojo Moyes. Amazing. Think The Fault in our Stars for adults. Almost.
“All I can say is that you make me…you make me into someone I couldn’t even imagine. You make me happy, even when you’re awful. I would rather be with you – even the you that you seem to think is diminished – than with anyone else in the world.” –Me Before You
I love letters. Specifically, I love Love Letters. So much so, that part of my Fiance’s proposal included a beautifully written letter, that I’ve re-read countless times. There’s something about putting pen to paper and expressing your thoughts and affections for another that’s no only beautiful, but appears to be dying. In the age of tweets and text messages, are we losing the art of handwritten expression?
I’ve taken to reading some of the Love Letters of Great Men, and I think I’ve found a favorite. We all know Beethoven for his music, but did you know he was a romantic letter-writer? I didn’t. But it turns out he wrote the line which we all now like to attribute to Sex in the City, “Ever thine, ever mine, ever ours.” Well, that about sums it up. For marriage, for spending your life with someone, for giving them your heart. Ever thine, ever mine, ever ours. And of course, it helps this was the third of three letters sent to Beethoven’s secret love (collective sigh across the blogosphere).
Here’s the letter in totality:
|The Third Letter|
| Good morning, on July 7
Though still in bed, my thoughts go out to you, my Immortal Beloved, now and then joyfully, then sadly, waiting to learn whether or not fate will hear us – I can live only wholly with you or not at all – Yes, I am resolved to wander so long away from you until I can fly to your arms and say that I am really at home with you, and can send my soul enwrapped in you into the land of spirits – Yes, unhappily it must be so – You will be the more contained since you know my fidelity to you. No one else can ever possess my heart – never – never – Oh God, why must one be parted from one whom one so loves. And yet my life in V is now a wretched life – Your love makes me at once the happiest and the unhappiest of men – At my age I need a steady, quiet life – can that be so in our connection? My angel, I have just been told that the mailcoach goes every day – therefore I must close at once so that you may receive the letter at once – Be calm, only by a calm consideration of our existence can we achieve our purpose to live together – Be calm – love me – today – yesterday – what tearful longings for you – you – you – my life – my all – farewell. Oh continue to love me – never misjudge the most faithful heart of your beloved.
At work today we have our board member here for their annual board meeting (where I assume everyone is just sitting around bored, but, more on my imagination later), and our head board member Joe White shared this poem. It was so touching and moving that I wanted to share it with you. The drawing was hand sketched by a friend of his, and getting to see this beautiful art accompanied with the moving words of the poem just about made up for us having to dress professional today and skip dress-down Friday. Mostly. Ok, it did. Ok, just read the poem.
‘Twas battered and scarred,
And the auctioneer thought it
hardly worth his while
To waste his time on the old violin,
but he held it up with a smile.
“What am I bid, good people”, he cried,
“Who starts the bidding for me?”
“One dollar, one dollar, Do I hear two?”
“Two dollars, who makes it three?”
“Three dollars once, three dollars twice, going for three,”
From the room far back a gray bearded man
Came forward and picked up the bow,
Then wiping the dust from the old violin
And tightening up the strings,
He played a melody, pure and sweet
As sweet as the angel sings.
The music ceased and the auctioneer
With a voice that was quiet and low,
Said “What now am I bid for this old violin?”
As he held it aloft with its’ bow.
“One thousand, one thousand, Do I hear two?”
“Two thousand, Who makes it three?”
“Three thousand once, three thousand twice,
Going and gone”, said he.
The audience cheered,
But some of them cried,
“We just don’t understand.”
“What changed its’ worth?”
Swift came the reply.
“The Touch of the Masters Hand.”
“And many a man with life out of tune
All battered and bruised with hardship
Is auctioned cheap to a thoughtless crowd
Much like that old violin
A mess of pottage, a glass of wine,
A game and he travels on.
He is going once, he is going twice,
He is going and almost gone.
But the Master comes,
And the foolish crowd never can quite understand,
The worth of a soul and the change that is wrought
By the Touch of the Masters’ Hand.
– by Myra Brooks Welch
Enjoy the day, lovelies.