This is the season, trees stripped clean and what was hidden now is seen, the path that leads into the woods, the littered leaves, the crooked walls that once marked fields where grass grew tall, remnants of a time long past, reminding me that nothing lasts.
Will death be like this, do you think, the day the breath does not return, will our true nature be revealed when stripped of memory, heart, bone, sight, will we, too, open to the sky, and, like the forest, fill with light?
He roamed quarries at Carrara caressing blocks of marble, tracing veins like a blind man to find the Virgin within. Here, the limp arm hangs; here, the bent head of the mother; here, her murdered son.
He coaxed her from stone chiseling in her face the memory of Simeon's prophecy of a sword piercing her heart: a wholly inadequate portent for this, this hammer of death harder than marble.
Study war no more
Mar 18, 2011
Michael Izbicki grew up in a nondenominational church in California. A National Merit Scholarship finalist, he chose to go to the U.S. Naval Academy out of a sense of duty to his country during a time of war. At the naval academy he began to doubt whether the career to which he had committed himself could be squared with the tenets of just war doctrine. He got in trouble when he responded no to this exam question: "If given the order, would you launch a missile carrying a nuclear warhead?" After a four-year legal battle, the navy discharged him as a conscientious objector. Izbicki may have to reimburse the service for part or all of his education (New York Times, February 22).