Monday, 23 April 2007

Measuring out my life

One of the most perceptive comments about the movement of life is the oft quoted line of Eliot's poem The Love Song of J Alfred Prufrock ..I have measured out my life in coffee spoons.
Some days seem like that to me, I go from one cup of coffee to the next...though perhaps I could more accruately say I have measured out my life by radio programs.
There are certain things I like to listen to and they rather punctuate the week.
Sometimes I find myself organising my life around them...being in the right place at the right time....or being close to the radio at the right time.
Mondays are often like that...because I like to listen to Tony Wright making comment about the ridiculous carryings on in our nation's capital. And then on Monday at 10 you get The Two Chris's (one now a Minister of the Crown, and the other a former Senator) who are perhaps good example of that carry on.
Then sometimes, like Eliot, I look back and see how pathetically small it all us.
Contrast with a rather overwhelming family week last week.
When we had the funeral of the last person in a generation. So now in that branch of the Little family (my mother) I am part of the oldest generation. That is secretly overpowering I think.
We had a wedding, and the matron of honour decided she would give birth...not during the ceremony, so a new generation continues. The wedding was terrific and there was a real sense of family.
At one stage we had a "Clark photo" and though there were thirty odd of us I suppose (and could have been more) there were only my immediate family who are actually still called Clark. And in that curious way that things go on, I realised because I have daughters and my brother has no is unlikely that our name will be perpetuated any way.
Does it matter?...Is it coffee spoons...or radio programs? Maybe. But important to one's own family


Trevor said...

When we had the funeral of the last person in a generation. ...
We had a wedding, and the matron of honour decided she would give birth ...

That reminds me of one particular week in the life of my local church. During the week, there was a service of thanksgiving for the life of a much loved old saint of the congregation who had died after an undeserved and awful battle with cancer; most of the congregation attended. Then on the Saturday afternoon, there was a wedding between 2 members of the congregation to which the whole church family (ie. the congregation) was invited. It was a service of worship and communion, with the marriage vows as part of the service. The church was full (it's a large hall, built for better times in the life of the church, so it usually is never anywhere near full, except for Christmas Day) and the wedding and the afternoon tea which followed were joyful times. Then on the Sunday, the young daughter of the newly married couple was baptised into the holy, apostolic and universal church, in another joyful service of worship (even though a few of the more elderly members of the congregation were somewhat scandalised by the fact that the parents of the child had only been married on the preceding day).

It all affirmed life and joy, even the service of thanksgiving for the departed saint.

Sometimes, there are very special moments in the life of a church.

stephen clark said...

A colleague did recently baptise a baby at a wedding!!