t h e m a y f i l e s is foremost a family blog, chronicling everyday life. Life including natural, healthy eating (with recipes thrown in at random), home educating (with ideas popping up sporadically), an attempt to homestead on .2 acres (with very meager yields), raising 3 of 4 children with a rare genetic disorder, and lots of highly personal family triumphs and failures. You may also find an eclectic array of musings on politics, exercise, sewing, emergency preparedness, backyard chickens, and religion. This blog isn't a campaign to glorify anyone or anything. Just simply a record.


Nothing Holds a Candle to Literature

In only seven days I have been privy to 2 powerful and poignant literary masterpieces. Two disparate genres. Two similar experiences.

Firstly, I finished Les Miserables by Victor Hugo. I literally sobbed into my pillow at 12:30 am for 45 minutes as I read the closing pages of this book, my heart and spirit heavily invested in the tragic but triumphant life of Jean Valjean. I found myself not just spilling tears but crying out into my pillow (under the covers with my flashlight of course) in anger and frustration to try to spare the characters the painful journey out of the holes I watched them dig.

This is one 1,400 page book worth reading. I read the unabridged version. There were some interjectory parts I skimmed, but some of these historical interludes I devoured.

Secondly, I just came downstairs from reading with the girls seven, I dare say scriptural, pages in The Voyage of the Dawn Treader (book 5 in the Chronicles of Narnia). Pages 104 through 111. I struggled to fight back the tears as I felt the raw emotion of this allegory of Christ healing us from our sinful states. The spirit was tangible. Lying in bed, each of my daughters sat up during this chapter, their little bodies not relaxed, their minds absorbed, their mouths silent.

It was Aslan. The girls knew it was Aslan, come to heal Eustace. After a simple prompt, Ellery immediately grasped the illusion. It is Jesus Mom. He is the only one who rid us of our dragon skins. My reply: And sometimes it really hurts. Who hasn't been there? My heart beats faster as I mull over these passages in my mind. We speak of literature that edifies, this is such. I don't know if you could just read this book and have the passage move you, or if the entire series is needed. But this one chapter, in this one book makes the entire Chronicles worth every moment.

Two fantastic presents for anyone. Les Miserables or The Chronicles of Narnia.

I know they have made the movies recently of the Chronicles of Narnia. I haven't seen them. I can't imagine they hold a candle to the books, but I could be wrong. I just don't see how you would pull the majesty and raw emotion of this particular scene in a movie. I could be wrong.

1 comment:

Christy said...

I am so glad you liked that Les Miserable book! Sadly, that was what I was going to get you for your birthday present this year, so now I have to come up with another idea. A friend of mine told me it was one of her all-time favorite books. I am planning on reading it myself soon - but I thought that would be a great book to give you. Any new suggestions? Just kidding. I'll come up with something.