Thursday, June 2, 2011

Jackson


Next week, this kid is deploying to Afghanistan:



That’s my little brother Jackson, my one and only sibling and my very first best friend.  I don’t know if this is true for other sisters, but Jackson has always had a special ability to tug my heartstrings like no one else. For instance, I was Clara in the Nutcracker, which is a big deal for ballerinas. And lots of people came up to me and complimented me afterwards, I’m sure, but what I remember is this little boy in a Christmas sweater looking at me and telling me I was really good.  And even at 13, my heart bust wide open.

So I suppose it makes sense, that the only time I cried on my wedding day was watching my brother do this reading in our ceremony:

Our bond is no little economy based on the exchange 
of my love and work for yours, so much for so much
of an expendable fund. We don’t know what its limits are—
that puts it in the dark. We are more together
than we know, how else could we keep on discovering   
we are more together than we thought?
You are the known way leading always to the unknown,
and you are the known place to which the unknown is always   
leading me back. More blessed in you than I know,   
I possess nothing worthy to give you, nothing   
not belittled by my saying that I possess it.   
Even an hour of love is a moral predicament, a blessing   
a man may be hard up to be worthy of. He can only   
accept it, as a plant accepts from all the bounty of the light   
enough to live, and then accepts the dark,   
passing unencumbered back to the earth, as I   
have fallen time and again from the great strength   
of my desire, helpless, into your arms.

(From The Country of Marriage by Wendell Barry)


Be safe over there little brother.


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