Nothing Gold

Nature's first green is gold,
Her hardest hue to hold.
Her early leaf's a flower;
But only so an hour.
Then leaf subsides to leaf.
So Eden sank to grief,
So dawn goes down to day.
Nothing gold can stay. -Robert Frost

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Location: Arlington, Virginia, United States

I am a white American middle class suburban housewife trying desperately to tell herself that that is not who she is. One time I was a glowing young ruffian. Oh my God it was a million years ago.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007


I can't help this week but think of William Stavlund a lot. And if I could stop, I don't think I would. Remebering is a good thing. I think of him fairly often still. Sometimes I remember him with a pang when I see some little reminder. Like a Haberman feeder in an oral therapy catalogue. Sometimes I remember him fondly when I look at his sister. Often I remember him when I think about the way he changed my life. The life and death of that little boy changed me for good. I mean for good in both senses. It's going to be hard to explain. I think some people will be able to relate and some won't. Before Will died, nearly everything made sense. My world was obviously not perfect, but it was orderly. There was pattern and sense in it. It was neat. But it wasn't real. It was as if I was looking at a picture of the world. Much of it was beautiful, some of it was not, but it was ordered. The beautiful things were at the front and the ugly things were kept neatly in their places. When Will died, that picture was ripped beyond repair. I realized how unreal it was. The ugly things weren't, and had never been, neatly contained. That was hard at first. But when I finally picked myself up off the floor, I noticed something else. The beauty of the world was much better in real life than it had been in that picture. I had to be able to see the ugliness too, but the beauty that was there was astounding. And the first beautiful thing I was able to see when the picture was destroyed after Will's death, was his life. His life brought out beauty all around. It brought out good things in me. It brought out good things in people all around. There was astounding beauty in that and in the love and support I saw for his family, both before and after his death. There still continues to be beauty in that. I miss his parents and sister so much it makes my eyes water, but it is so beautiful to see the people still around them still supporting and loving them.
I continue to look at the world in a more real way. I haven't attempted to repair that picture, and it has made all the difference. There are some bad things happening in my family right now. Not with Schuyler and Levi, but with other parts of my family. This kind of thing has happened before, and it was much harder then. It was as if my carefully constructed world was falling apart. It was eventually mostly healed and I put my world back to together. It's different this time. I don't have that carefully constructed world. The world just is and I can see that more clearly now. It still hurts just as much. I don't want anyone to think that I have become emotionally dead or anything like that. It just doesn't reel me as much. I thank Will for that. I will continue to remember him for good.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks Maggie.
I miss you, too.

7:24 PM  

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