Mark’s currently taking a class on radical publishers/writers during the British Romantic period — which of course creates 1700 pages of light summer reading for him. (Wink. Wink.) Although he at times must drudge through these heavy texts, for the most part he’s enjoyed the reading. I mean, the Romantics led fairly interesting (even weird) lives writing dark, emotional worlds and narratives; what more to give you a dose of modern perspective and light-heartedness? Plus this has led to all sorts of new interesting conversation between us and around the table at mealtime, including when Mark recently passed me this poem by William Blake.
‘”My hands are laboured day and night
And rest conies never in my sight;
My wife has no indulgence given
Except what comes to her from heaven;
We eat little, we drink less;
This earth breeds not our happiness.”
I just smiled, commenting, “ah Mark. Things aren’t that bad.” He knows, and chuckles appreciating my slight mockery, “but it’s true. ‘The earth breeds not our happiness.” Amen. But life has been sweet, even in this hard year. Lately we’ve been relishing Mark’s reprieve from the school year (and our own), soaking up the small, significant beauties in our days often overlooked with haste, like leisure breakfasts and his mid-afternoon time with the kids. I’m listening for more words floating on summer’s hot breath, swelling words of promise: we are not forgotten. Rejoice. Rejoice. Rejoice.