Tuesday, March 18, 2008

The Oyster

In her book Gift From the Sea,
Anne Morrow Lindbergh
talks about her fourth shell, the oyster bed,
as a symbol of the middle years of marriage.
"Sprawling and uneven, it has the irregularity of something growing. It looks rather like the house of a big family, pushing out one addition after another to hold its teeming life...it amuses me because it seems so much like my life at the moment...untidy, spread out in all directions, heavily encrusted with accumulations.... The oyster has fought to have that place on the rock to which it has fitted itself perfectly. ...so most couples in the growing years of marriage struggle to achieve a place in the world. It is a physical and material battle first of all, for a home, for children, for a place in their particular society.
Here the bonds of marriage are formed. For marriage, which is always spoken of as a bond, becomes actually many bonds, many strands, of different texture and strength, making up a web that is taut and firm. The web is fashioned of love. Yes, but many kinds of love; romantic love first, then a slow-growing devotion and, a constantly rippling of companionship. It is made of loyalties, and inter dependencies, and shared experiences. It is woven of memories of meetings and conflicts; of triumphs and disappointments. It is a web of communication, a common language, too; a knowledge of likes and dislikes, of habits and reactions, both physical and mental. It is a web of instincts and intuitions.....
I am very fond of the oyster shell. It is humble and awkward and ugly. It's form is not primarily beautiful but functional....Sometimes I resent its burdens and excrescences. But its tireless adaptability and tenacity draw my astonished admiration and sometimes even my tears....."
~~anne morrow lindbergh

1 comment:

  1. I've never heard of Anne Morrow Lindbergh. Thank you for this wonderful thought...


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