Friday, November 11, 2011


From: Mindwalker1910

Subject: Laughing stars

Date: Thu, 29 Jun 2000 22:40:42 EDT

Today is Antoine de Saint-Exupery's 100th birthday. He died many years short of it, last seen in 1944 flying a Free French reconnaissance plane over the Mediterranean, a German fighter plane in hot pursuit. No one really knows for sure what happened, his body was never found, which seems a poetic fate for the author of The Little Prince.

Lots and lots of people know Saint-Exupery's most famous quote, the gift of wisdom the fox gave the Little Prince when they parted - "One sees clearly only with the heart. What is essential is invisible to the eye."

I would like to share a less famous piece from the book. It appears near the end of the book, as the Little Prince is speaking to the Aviator.

"People have stars, but they aren't the same. For travelers, stars are guides. For other people, they are nothing but tiny lights. And for still others, for scholars, they're a problem. For my businessman, they were gold. But all these stars are silent stars. You, though, you'll have stars like nobody else."

"What do you mean?"

"When you look up at the sky, since I will be living on one of them, since I'll be laughing on one of them, for you it will be as if all the stars are laughing. You'll have stars that can laugh!"

And he laughed again.

"And when you're consoled (everyone eventually is consoled), you'll be glad that you've known me. You'll always be my friend. You'll feel like laughing with me. And you'll open your window sometimes just for the fun of it... And your friends will be amazed to see you laughing up at the sky..."

* * * * * *

I love that passage for itself and because it makes me think of my father. In his final illness, he would look at us (I was 19 and Betty was 17), smile that gentle smile that hovered under his beard, and said, "Soon I will be hanging out the stars."

Because of my father, the stars laugh for me even to this day. When I am hanging out the stars with Pete, I hope they will laugh for you.

Good night, my friends. Am off to bed - Katharine Reynolds Lockhart

Thursday, November 10, 2011

ODE to JOY 12/29/00 ~ Best of...

Subj: Ode to Joy
Date: Fri Dec 29 07:49:13 EST 2000
(originally reposted 12/30/10)

The Dallas Symphony Orchestra closed its season last night with a rousing presentation of Beethoven's 9th Symphony, the Choral Symphony, which includes the Ode to Joy. My goodness, what a lot of memories it sparked.

It reminded me of a summer many, many moons ago when Wynne Pitcairn, Mim, myself and Elsa went to the shore for a week - Ventnor, or Brigantine or Ocean City. We had a house right on the beach.

Unfortunately, Wynne got sick almost as soon as we arrived. In true generous Wynne style, she did not want the rest of us to miss out on a good time, so she had Mim drive her back to her Horigan grandparents' Bryn Athyn home where she could get TLC and then Mim could come back to the shore for the rest of the stay.

We missed them when they left, so I decided that we should take the jitney (a small bus) up to Atlantic City, stroll the boardwalk and see a movie. We saw HELP!, which starred the Beatles.

My, how I enjoyed that movie. I remember the scene where the four of them entered what looked like the doors to four separate row houses, only to find they were in a large common room. It was a delightful movie. At one part, Ringo is threatened by the a man-eating Bengal tiger. A Scotland Yard inspector tells him that all will be well, that it was the famous man-eating Bengal tiger that had escaped from the famous London Zoo and that it had a fondness for the Ode to Joy. The inspector starts singing it, then Ringo joins in, then the rest of the Beatles, then the rest of the Scotland Yard contingent, then the group gets larger and larger until there is a shot of an entire stadium singing the Ode to Joy.

It also reminds me of the television broadcasts of the Olympics. I do not know if it still is, but the Ode to Joy was part and parcel of the telecasts at one time. It always set my spirits soaring.

Whenever I hear the Ode to Joy, I think of fun and exhilaration. I think Beethoven would be pleased.

Have a warm, snug day. We are expecting a major snowstorm tonight. Brrrrr.

Take care - KRL

Monday, November 7, 2011

RITUAL WASHING 04/03/00 ~ Best of...

Subject: ritual washing
Date: Mon, 3 Apr 2000 23:06:40 EDT
(this e-pistle was originally reposted July 12, 2010)

I am just about ready for bed. If I peek around the corner of the computer studio, I can see the Spring Tree* all lit up and lovely in the living room. The sound of the Glencairn Horns drifts up from the living room and will be the last thing I hear before heading to the land of Winken, Blinken and Nod.

It is a serene moment.

Elsa just washed my face. You might be surprised as what a lovely ritual face washing can be. Every moment of it makes me feel like being at a super posh spa.

(Oh, the horns just played the crescendo from “Calm On the List'ning Ear of Night” and I am all goose bumps.)

First, the warm, soapy lathering up. It makes my face feel quite pampered and fussed over.

Next, comes the first warm rinse.

Then, my favorite, the hot cloth draped from forehead to chin. Ahhhh, that feels so good.

Then, the second hot application, this time focusing on my forehead. I do not know why my forehead likes so much attention, but there it is.

Finally, the cold application, which makes my face sit up and take notice.

The very last is having Oil of Olay applied to my face. Connie Rosenquist introduced me to Oil of Olay - not much hope of it doing a lot of good for this ancient face, but it feels so wonderful as it is soothed onto my face.

I never paid much attention to the sensual aspects (and I do not mean that in a sexy way) of washing my face when I did it myself. It was just one more thing to check off on my nightly routine. But now - ah, now it is a moment of luxury.

Blissfully yours - Ma Lockhart

*the Spring Tree was an artificial Christmas tree that we'd left up because, as Mom said, "It cast a lovely light." (One blessing of having an artificial tree - our 1999 Christmas tree was the first that wasn't fresh cut.) It was covered with hearts in February & decked out in spring flowers from March-May. The tree was set in the far corner of the living room, directly in Mom's line of sight from her bed.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

CHAMOMILE 02/25/00 ~ Best of...

Subj: Mindwalkers - Chamomile
Date: 2/25/00 10:45:21 PM Eastern Daylight Time
(this e-pistle first reposted may 22, 2010)

There is something especially soothing drinking chamomile tea, especially after an arduous outing. From the first moment I take the box of tea out of the cupboard, I feel happier and more relaxed. The chamomile boxtop has a picture of a woman with long hair in a flowing dress on a swing, a thatched cottage in the background - lovely. My favorite boxtop is the Echinacea Cold Season tea ~ a koala wrapped in a quilt, a pot of tea and box of tissues perched on a tree limb, holding a hot cuppa in his hand; a kookaburra sits across friom him, in the background a kangaroo and another koala & a billy and in there is just a bit of Ayers Rock. Quite a lot for a little box!.

I earned a hot cuppa chamomile tonight. Had my first C.T. scan at 8:00 am. I thought I must have confused the date, Holy Redeemer Hospital looked empty. But it was the right night, afterall. I had asked my doctor and I had asked his nurses if it was a difficult test and they all said it was easy. I guess easy is a comparative term, because I did not think it was. I found the MRI easier. That surprised me, because I get terrible claustrophobia and I expected the MRI to be awful. But they put on some Nat King Cole and it was pleasantly warm and I actually fell asleep. The C.T. scan, on the other hand, was uncomfortable and the room was chilly.

All the way home, I thought about a hot cup of chamomile tea, a few SnackWell crackers, and a bit of crystalized ginger. It was every bit as soothing as I thought it would be. Ah, for the simple pleasures of life.

Love to all - M/G/N/AK/K

reposted in sweet memory of its original poster, Katharine Reynolds Lockhart, by her transcriber/daughter, Elsa (Deev) Lockhart Murphy, in celebration of the Gramster’s centenary (May 14)

Friday, November 4, 2011

GOOD GRIEF 03/07/00 ~ Best of....

Subject: Good Grief, Charlie Brown
Date: Tue, 7 Mar 2000** 23:41:00 EST
(the following e-pistle was first reposted in june 2010)

A discussion group that I have been part of for some time has included some interesting thoughts recently about grief. Seems a lot of people (including ministers and doctors) feel uncomfortable addressing the idea of grief over the loss of a loved one.

Why is it that people think it would be comforting to tell someone in the freshness of loss that they should be happy because the loved one is "in a better place"? Grief is not frivolous; it is an important part of living. Well, yes, people who grieve like Queen Victoria did - in an all-consuming fashion - do seem to be going overboard and forgetting the living. But normal grief at the loss of a loved one is an important growth step.

This was recently brought home to me by something Elsa told me. A very young friend's grandmother died after a long and sad illness. The little girl was, naturally, feeling desolate and was unusually somber in school. Instead of just letting the little one feel her sense of loss, her teacher – with the best of intentions - said, "Don't be sad!" in a light tone. Why wasn’t it okay for the little girl to be sad?

When Pete died at the relatively young age of 61, a doctor friend of ours, someone I respect and whose opinion I value, said to me, "Well, Kay, it's been six months since Pete passed away. Time to be getting on with life."

Luckily, I just thought he was bonkers.

Life would never be the same, just as it was never the same after Ian, our youngest son, died. Oh, the sun came out and happy times returned, but the sky was never quite the same shade of blue. Our oldest, Peter, said to me several years about Ian died, when tears welled up in my eyes over some small reminder, "You still miss him, don't you, even after all this time." He just couldn't get over it. When his own son turned 11 years old, Peter told me, "I understand now. I cannot imagine what I would do if anything happened to Reynolds."

For weeks after Pete died, I just sat in the big chair in the living room and felt at a complete loss. I had just lost my heart. The grief was not for Pete. How many people do you know who grieve on behalf of the person who died? Not many. I grieved for a loss beyond my comprehension.

When parents or siblings have a terminal illness or injury, adults wonder what to share with the children. Truman Capote was permanently scarred by his adored grandfather's death - not wanting to traumatize the child, the adults told him his grandfather "went away." Unimaginable. Then, again, I have heard some strange tales from friends within my own church about how adults in their lives handled (or mishandled) what they told or did not tell children about a loved one's death.

There are different forms of grief:
> There is the personal grief when a loved one dies.
> There is community grief, as when a young person dies in war. I remember the sadness that swept over Bryn Athyn when Richard (Pat) Walter died in World War II - it brought us together and many of his classmates called their sons Richard in his honor. Including, I believe, Richard Simons, whose death in Vietnam again brought Bryn Athyn together in grief.
> There is national grieving, as when Charles Schultz and Jim Henson passed away.
> There is even international grieving. FDR, JFK, Diana come to mind. Cynics label it hysteria, but total strangers coming together in sadness, leaving bouquets outside wrought iron gates or tossing flowers at a passing hearse, can be healing.

Did you grow up thinking about grief as a normal part of life or did you get the message to "be happy" instead of feeling the loss? It is 41 years since Ian died and I still miss him. It is 26 years since Pete's death and I will always and forever miss him every day.

How do I hope my family and friends will grieve when this Ancient One finally shakes these mortal coils? With a sense of loss, longing for the good times we shared, forgiveness for the rotten stuff, and - hopefully - lots of partying.

It is very, very late (almost midnight EST) & I must hie this tired body off to beddy bye.

Love to you all – Mum

reposted with sweet memories of its author, KATHARINE REYNOLDS LOCKHART, by her scribe/daughter, Elsa Lockhart Murphy aka DEEV

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

WILLIAM WOLF DAVIS 10/30/00 ~ best of...

Date: Mon, 30 Oct 2000 07:11:21 EST
Subject: William Wolf Davis
(this e-pistle was originally reposted on 11/01/10

The Reynolds branch of my family may have the more distinguished heritage but the Davis side is rich with interesting characters.

My grandfather, William Wolf Davis, outlived three wives. His first and the mother of his children was Katharine Rebecca. I am named for her. She died when she was 45 years old. At that time, everyone thought she'd lived to a good age. Since she died before I was born, I have no memories of her.

I barely recall Grandfather Davis' second wife. In fact, I cannot remember her name, just that we called her Mom-Mom. That woman was a piece of work. When she cooked anything, she went strictly by the recipe, cooking something no longer and no shorter than it called for in the recipe. This was back in the days of wood-heated stoves, without the temperature controls we take for granted these days. My grandfather developed a stomach condition because of eating too much undercooked food. The kitchen was her department,so he would not say a word. One time, my mother made an early dinner for her brother, Aram, who was going out for the evening. Mom-Mom chewed her out, saying that if Aram could not eat with the family, he would not eat at all. She was a real tartar.

I do have more distinct memories of Sarah, my grandfather's last wife. Sarah was attractive to the eye, but inside she seemed to be a dried up, withered prune. A maiden lady when she married Grandfather Davis, he got the surprise of his life when she denied him the privileges of the marriage bed. Sarah said that, at their age, they were too old for that sort of thing. I got the impression from my mother that my grandfather did not agree, but what could he do.

As a staunch Methodist household of that period, there was no drinking, no dancing, no cards, no nothing at my grandfather's house. He only took liquor if he was having ”a spell”. It amazed me how many spells that man had.

I recall one time when he was visiting at our house in Arbutus. My brother Al made ginger ale and bourbon drinks for everyone, except grandfather. Grandfather Davis perked up and asked if he could have one too. Al was only too happy and poured a generous serving. Just as he handed it to Grandfather Davis, who should walk in but Uncle Aram.

Now, Uncle Aram was the staunchest of the staunch when it came to the "thou shalt nots." Everyone shot around a look of "what next?"

Uncle Aram looked at them all holding their highball glasses and grilled, "What are you drinking?"

My brother Al remained completely unflustered. (I was quivering in my boots.) "Why, we are all enjoying some ginger ale. Could I get you some?"

"Yes," replied Uncle Aram, "But add some water - ginger ale is too strong a drink for me."

So there we all were on the wraparound porch, Uncle Aram with his ginger ale with a splash of water and the rest with more spirited beverages.

A toast - to the characters in our families, who help build the character of our families!

Love to all – Gocky