Dear friends and readers,
We’ve revived Poetry Sunday on Trollope19thCStudies and I thought I’d try it here too. Jim had many favorite poets: among them one I’m not sure I’ve mentioned as yet, e.e. cummings of whom I now have 4 selections and one Complete Poems, 1904-62. One of these selections Jim had among his books when I first met him (he was 20): 73 poems, a thin old Carcenet volume.
This comes from the Complete Poems and has at its core an Elizabeth conceit found in Philip Sidney’s Arcadia: My true-love hath my heart, and I have his …
i carry your heart with me(i carry it in
my heart)i am never without it(anywhere
i go you go,my dear;and whatever is done
by only me is your doing, my darling)
no fate(for you are my fate,my sweet)i want
no world(for beautiful you are my world,my true)
and it’s you are whatever a moon has always meant
and whatever a sun will always sing is you
here is the deepest secret nobody knows
(here is the root of the root and the bud of the bud
and the sky of the sky of a tree called life;which grows
higher than soul can hope or mind can hide)
and this is the wonder that’s keeping the stars apart
i carry your heart(i carry it in my heart)
I remember the Admiral reading aloud e. e. cummings to me. I wish now I could enact this poem and he carry my heart in his chest (remembering Sidney’s poem).
He also liked the paintings of Poussin, and one weekend in NYC we went to a large Poussin exhibit twice and brought home a beautiful book. This painting was not among them; indeed I’ve never seen it before, but it contains a myth the Admiral knew well in various forms (from Wagner to more modern versions).
It’s the sky blue shirt and the darker blue sky as well as the symmetry, order, peace, harmony of the whole (whatever is happening within) that lifts the picture into a Poussin realm.
I was at the Haven again today and met with my “grief support group” for a second time. It was not so draining, the people were all more controlled (including me). One person has dropped out and two new people came. The facilitator who I’ll call Drew (not his name) very kindly drove another man and me home — to two very different places. This way I can go again next week without the cost beginning to mount (as it’s a cab but one way). Again I found that the people there were going through the experiences I am, feeling similar feelings. The facilitator called my sense that I was in shock for about 3 months after Jim died and that actually enabled me to do a lot “the novacaine” effect. Now the imagined drug has worn off. Just about everyone has trouble sleeping more than 2 hours in a row; how hard it is to do things alone. I did feel better when I left and the talk with Drew who drove me home was good too.