Friday, October 25, 2013

Well Said: All Mankind is of One Author

A movie discussion group I belong to selected 84 Charing Cross Road to watch. I wasn't crazy about the movie although everyone did their best with a very thin subject, but ... and finally we come to the point ... at one point Anne Bancroft's character reads aloud from John Donne. I liked it well enough to want it in my quote journal and was stunned to find it came from the famous "ask not for whom the bell tolls ... no man is an island" meditation. So I'm giving you the bit she read aloud, but do go read the whole thing. It isn't very long but is really wonderful.
All mankind is of one author, and is one volume; when one man dies, one chapter is not torn out of the book, but translated into a better language; and every chapter must be so translated; God employs several translators; some pieces are translated by age, some by sickness, some by war, some by justice; but God's hand is in every translation, and his hand shall bind up all our scattered leaves again, for that library where every book shall lie open to one another ...
John Donne, Meditation XVII

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