Drop by Drop

“In our sleep, pain which cannot forget falls drop by drop upon the heart until, in our own despair, against our will, comes wisdom through the awful grace of God.”
I wish to Hell I didn’t know what he was talking about. But I do. We all do. Or if you don’t know yet, you will. And how the Hell did he find a way to say it? That must have cost him something too.
I read this in Newseek! Bobby Kennedy cited it, calling Aeschylus his “favorite poet,” the night he had to tell a crowd of people, few of whom had yet heard, that Rev. Martin Luther King had been shot and killed that day.
So, without knowing it, he was also speaking to the people who would watch him die a few weeks later. He was, like King, an avatar of the hard truth in America, a country with politics so shallow you really can kill an idea with a bullet. One more for Wallace, with his divisive vote on the Right, and you’ve got Nixon, and you can forget about the truth.
I don’t think either Nixon or the Bushes ever needed to be warned to stay away from Aeschylus if they didn’t want to feel their lies sucking out their breath and cutting their own throats.



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