• Outside, coursing in from the west, the amber and violet gloaming has begun.

    Dinner is over, and I sit at the piano. Behind me a stream of girlish laughter twirls and dashes through the living room in response […]

  • On one of the golden swan song days of last October, my husband and I took our two small daughters to see the Claude Monet: Truth of Nature exhibit at the Denver Art Museum. Afterward, the road home was […]

  • @caleb-fetterhoff Thank you, Caleb, for this kind and thoughtful response!

    For my part, I think a meditation on the words “Blessed Virgin” and the significance of Mary’s life might easily invite the foreshadowing of her grief, since the reality of it is there in the gospel accounts from the beginning (“and a sword will pierce through your ow…[Read more]

  • I’m embarking on what may well prove a fool’s errand tonight with this essay (for can one ever really explain the glimpses that catch at one’s heartstrings?)—but at the very least, it will hopefully excuse […]

    • @caleb-fetterhoff Thank you, Caleb, for this kind and thoughtful response!

      For my part, I think a meditation on the words “Blessed Virgin” and the significance of Mary’s life might easily invite the foreshadowing of her grief, since the reality of it is there in the gospel accounts from the beginning (“and a sword will pierce through your own soul also”).

      But for Lauridsen (see p. 16-17 of the “Thunderstruck by Art” piece, linked above), Francisco de Zurbaran’s “Still Life with Lemons, Oranges, and a Rose” appears to have had a direct effect as well — he was so moved by the painting that he wanted to weep. This was the experience he wanted to relay musically, and to do so he caught the “contrast between the [slightly withered rose, signifying Mary] and the other objects in the painting” through his dissonant note and its contemplation upon her suffering. Salvation was to come at a price — indeed the highest of all prices — to which Mary would have a front-row seat, so that even her blessedness in being favored and chosen by God was not the untroubled and happy thing we might otherwise imagine it to be. “Blessed Virgin,” therefore, is a phrase that must communicate all of the above if it is to be truthful: the favor, the sorrow, the goodness of God that sees beyond the simple human grasp of “good” and blesses through suffering in order that unimaginably greater joys may be secured on our behalf.

      These are only my own thoughts, not those of Lauridsen or anyone with musical or artistic expertise. What are yours?

  • [Editor’s note: We’ve decided to take the last few days of 2018 to repost some of our favorite pieces of writing that showed up on the blog this year. This third and final piece we’re sharing is “Beauty Beyond the […]

    • When I was a high schooler, I had to the I had to read about the Ten Booms in Corrie’s thoughtful book. It really grabbed my heart. Thank you for this reminder and encouragement!!

    • *leave out the 2nd “I had to read…”
      😂

    • Please excuse my typos!!
      😂

    • This is so beautiful! I fell in love with The Hiding Place years ago, and for a while it was one of my annual reads. Each time I felt like I took away something new. Something precious. It’s been a few years since I last picked it up though, so this article may inspire a reread!

  • Amy Baik Lee replied to the topic in the forum Amy Baik Lee 3 years, 8 months ago

    @racheldonahue How kind of you to follow that rabbit trail! I’m delighted to see that we have more in common. 🙂

  • Amy Baik Lee replied to the topic in the forum Amy Baik Lee 3 years, 8 months ago

    Since January 1st I’ve read All the Light We Cannot See (by Anthony Doerr), and I found the writing so unforced and poignant and gorgeous that it made me welcome similes again in my own writing. Afterwards I wanted more of the same style of prose, so I read Four Seasons in Rome by the same author as well. It was different, but immensely en…[Read more]

  • I’m stuck in the troubling position of wanting to say how deeply this piece astounded and comforted me… and emptying my pockets in vain for the proper words to express it. I’m also glad that I don’t know my true name yet, but you’ve made me gladder than ever that it exists, and that all the harrowing chapters involving that name aren’t scattered…[Read more]

  • Joni and Profile picture of Amy Baik LeeAmy Baik Lee are now friends 4 years ago

  • Amy Baik Lee replied to the topic in the forum Amy Baik Lee 4 years ago

    Yes! and I’m still surprised that quotes from those letters still surface in my memory from time to time, though it’s been over a decade now since I read them. One of my very favorites is this passage:

    <span style=”color: #222222; font-family: arial, sans-serif; font-size: 13px;”>”A few years ago I was visited in Oxford by a man whose name I have…

    [Read more]

  • I’ve loved the Anne books for as long as I can remember, and can’t believe that I never linked being of the race of Joseph to dreaming dreams(!). So much of this post pinpoints things that I’ve felt about Montgomery’s works but have never attempted to identify, like the idealism of kindred spirits, and the reorienting “goodness and sanity” and b…[Read more]

  • Amy Baik Lee replied to the topic in the forum Amy Baik Lee 4 years, 3 months ago

    I think this post belongs here. 🙂 ashleecowles.com/2016/07/29/food_and_fiction/

  • Amy Baik Lee's profile was updated 4 years, 5 months ago

  • Love this; thank you. I’m adding these words to the collection I keep for recalibration in hard and muddled seasons.

    “How shall we spend it, this last light of our day?” is a question I hope will haunt me till the final golden ray flashes on the horizon.

  • Load More