Monday, May 29, 2006

Memorial Day notes

The local Memorial Day parade is a small town treasure. Perfect weather today for the high school band, the girl scouts, the boy scouts, the children's lacrosse and softball leagues, two volunteer fire departments, North Shore Nursery School, the local parish priest(a first I think, behind his banners), three bagpipe bands, a large group of veterans, a group of soldiers just returned from a tour in Iraq, widows of veterans, and the Poppy Queen.

This weekend I read "Saturday" by Ian McEwan. It got me. Two days and it was done. Unlike "Atonement", his last novel, this novel is current, not historical, and written in a style that flows easily. It fits the today that I live in. It closes with a poem by Matthew Arnold, the last verse quoted as follows:
"Ah, love, let us be true
To one another! for the world, which seems
To lie before us like a land of dreams
So various, so beautiful, so new,
Hath really neither joy, nor love, nor light,
Nor certitude, nor peace, nor help for pain;
And we are on a darkling plain
Swept with confused alarms of struggle and flight,
Where ignorant armies clash by night."


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