Saturday, August 7, 2010


This is one of those days; I can tell it already. Nothing has gone smoothly, culminating in this website not allowing me to upload a photograph. I thought maybe the one I picked was too big or to dense or too something else, so I tried to upload one I had used previously. Nope, it wouldn't upload either. As my sister used to say, "Well, Hecky-Darn!"

So for no reason other than it is what comes to mind, I'm simply going to share a few sayings, or writings, with you that I like.

The first is a short little bit from the King James version of the Bible. It's from Revelations -- which I think always has had a few strange things in it, but this one is my favorite: Chapter 14, verse 2: "And I heard the voice of harpers harping with their harps." King James couched so many other thoughts and views in eloquent language that I am amazed that this one is so...well, so very straightforward. Again, my sister said, "I suppose King James, upon hearing a horn being blown also said, "I heard a tooter tooting on his toot." My sister had the same sense of humor as I did. We often talked about this funny verse.

Another portion in the Bible that I have always liked was the one in the book of Daniel that says " MENE, MENE, TEKEL, UPHARSIN. Thou art weighed in the balances, and art found wanting." Back in the mid-1990s our local newspaper asked readers to submit "True Life Essays" for the op-ed page. At the time, I was in the midst of trying to juggle a hectic full time job with the demands made of me as a wife, a mother and a grandmother. In the essay I sent to the newspaper I used this verse to tell how I felt about how I was doing: Mene, Mene, Tekel, Upharsin. Thou are weighed in the balances and art found wanting. They printed the article.

My mother raised us on old saying and adages. They are not so prevalent anymore, I think. At least I didn't use them much on my kids. But tears were countered with "Don't cry over spilt milk." Doing dishes when we'd rather be out playing elicited "Many hands make light work." Doing a chore the right way brought on "A stitch in time makes nine." Making do with what you have instead of what you want was accompanied by "A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush." And on, and on, and on. Mother also quite often tried to keep us from escalating an argument by saying, "Blessed are the peacemakers." Of course all these things were true, but the sheer quantity of them heaped upon us to get us through childhood was often a point of discussion later between my sister and me, as well as acknowledgment by others of a certain age that their parents did the same thing when they were kids.

And finally my current favorite of all writings is from Edgar Lee Masters' Spoon River anthology.

Rev. Abner Peet:

I had no objection at all
To selling my household effects at auction
On the village square.
It gave my beloved flock the chance
To get something which had belonged to me
For a memorial.
But that trunk which was struck off
To Burchard, the grog-keeper!
Did you know it contained the manuscripts
Of a lifetime of sermons?
And he burned them as waste paper.

Words I do understand.

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