A thousand ages in Thy sight / Are like an evening gone . . .

Our dream of life will end as dreams do end, abruptly and completely, when the sun rises, when the light comes. And we will think, All that fear and all that grief were about nothing. But that cannot be true. I cannot believe we will forget our sorrows altogether. That would be forgetting that we lived, humanly speaking. Sorrow seems to me to be a great part of the substance of human life. For example, at this very moment I feel a kind of loving grief for you as you read this, because I do not know you, and because you have grown up fatherless, you poor child, lying on your belly now in the sun with Soapy asleep on the small of your back. You are drawing those terrible little pictures that you will bring me to admire, and which I will admire because I have not the heart to say one word that you might remember against me.

— Marilynne Robinson, Gilead

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