September 13 1925 to January 17 2008
We pray.. for rest to the soul of the departed in a place of light, in a place of repose, in a place of refreshment, where there is no pain, sorrow, and suffering.
- Orthodox Memorial service.
We the living can do nothing for the dead but remember them. In time all the memories of my mother will be perfected, in the single remembrance of God or oblivion.
Until then all I can do is remember to celebrate her life, a life that did good in the world; a faithful life; a merry, kind-hearted life. I never knew all the stories of my mother's life. By now, some of them have traveled past the boundaries of forgetting. This looks like the end of the tale, but of course it is not. Ma lives on in the families of her children, and in the greater family of all those who loved her. It is only the closing of a chapter. All of the new stories run back into this story, and beyond.
I will remember this merry, kind-hearted life.
Friday, February 29, 2008
"Running out into the summer rain with mouth wide open to catch the heavy raindrops; drinking milk from the ladle in the cowshed down on the farm during the long vacation; later in life, searching for truth in a wineglass - those are just a few of the stages in the evolution of a being.
To blame, of course, is that thirst which befalls poor mortals as soon as they see the light of day and which never lets up again afterwards. Feeling its intensity rise, our smallest contemporaries emit an appropriate acoustic signal (the primeval yell).
To blame too is the thirst for knowledge which fires our ingenuity in devising ever more thirst-quenchers (monks showing the way with holy glee)."
This appears to be a translation from the original German, on the Hotel Schloss Zell website. Marvellous, whatever language it originated in.. holy glee indeed.
Image from the inimitable Alex Waterhouse-Hayward.
Edit 2010: for some inscrutable reason this post shows up on the second page of results for Googling "nunc est bibendum translation": but I do not in fact provide a translation. Sorry folks. Here's a good one, from a Pharyngula comment:
"Nunc est bibendum, nunc pede libero pulsanda tellus
Now is the time to drink, now the time to dance on the earth. Horace goes on to explain that there will be no drinking or dancing in the afterlife."