Thursday, September 14, 2006

A great raconteur

Ann Richards, q.e.p.d., took a lot of secrets and a lot of stories with her. There'll be plenty of tales told when the old Travis County gang gets together. I'm glad that Ave Bonar has made UT a repository of her negatives and other information. I bought a lot of those sets of post cards as presents for friends and relatives scattered all over the place and people were very happy to have them. If the images are up on the Web someplace, I haven't found them; the copyright issues are probably very involved. We laughed this morning to see that wonderful photo of Moya and Richards from Travis County political days in the 'Seventies. They both looked so young. No photograph could possibly ever capture two of the great eye-twinklers the world has ever seen. AWR lived a bold and full life. How many women born when she was accomplished so much in the public arena?

For now I see the true old times are dead,
When every morning brought a noble chance,
And every chance brought out a noble knight.
Such times have been not since the light that led
The holy Elders with the gift of myrrh.
But now the whole Round Table is dissolv’d
Which was an image of the mighty world,
And I, the last, go forth companionless,
And the days darken round me, and the years,
Among new men, strange faces, other minds.”

And slowly answer’d Arthur from the barge:
The old order changeth, yielding place to new,
And God fulfils himself in many ways,
Lest one good custom should corrupt the world.
Comfort thyself: what comfort is in me?
I have liv’d my life, and that which I have done
May He within himself make pure! but thou,
If thou shouldst never see my face again,
Pray for my soul. More things are wrought by prayer
Than this world dreams of. Wherefore, let thy voice
Rise like a fountain for me night and day.
For what are men better than sheep or goats
That nourish a blind life within the brain,
If, knowing God, they lift not hands of prayer
Both for themselves and those who call them friend?
For so the whole round earth is every way
Bound by gold chains about the feet of God.
But now farewell. I am going a long way
With these thou seëst—if indeed I go
(For all my mind is clouded with a doubt)—
To the island-valley of Avilion;
Where falls not hail, or rain, or any snow,
Nor ever wind blows loudly; but it lies
Deep-meadow’d, happy, fair with orchard lawns
And bowery hollows crown’d with summer sea,
Where I will heal me of my grievous wound.”



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