Wednesday, May 26, 2010

When half-gods go

Grandma's funeral was yesterday. It was beautiful. Her body rests now with the bodies of her baby, Alan, and her parents. But Grandma--the woman everyone knew and loved--is on a train, rushing off to her next adventure. According to C. S. Lewis, she is finally "beginning Chapter One of the Great Story which no one on earth has read: which goes on for ever: in which every chapter is better than the one before." Those are the last words of The Chronicles of Narnia.

Glow, little magic lamppost that is my heart!
Come to think of it, Grandma does remind me a lot of Lucy.

They are beautiful, compelling final words. Taken literally, they suggest that I'm still in the prologue of my book. Or maybe even just those boring pages with the ISBN and Library of Congress information. I can't wait to see what my book says!

No, wait, I have it! I am writing the title of my book. Defining myself, my life, what my story will be about. What ingenious metaphorizing!

Anyway, I read this in Grandma's Emerson book last night:

Though thou loved her as thyself,
As a self of purer clay,
Tho' her parting dims the day,
Stealing grace from all alive,
Heartily know,
When half-gods go,
The gods arrive.

It was a perfect way to end the day in which we said good-bye to a true half-god and ushered her on toward godhood.

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