Today’s literary homage goes to Edgar Lee Masters….born on this day in 1869.
Those minds familiar with his name will instantly conjure images of Spoon River.
This was his masterpiece….Spoon River Anthology.
He derived inspiration from a collection of ancient Greek poems; which just reinforces the truth that lives, no matter what town, no matter what century, share the same basic sorrows, disappointments, scars, and dreams.
Spoon River is told from the grave……the graves of Spoon River.
Without frills or embellishments, each resident lifts the veil of death that has concealed much in life……
You cannot read Spoon River without pondering one’s own life and legacy……
I have gone to a couple of performances of Spoon River Anthology at Green-Wood Cemetery, in NY.
The performance takes place among the graves; lit lanterns cast an eerie glow to ghostly faces as the words of each life are spoken.
Few words, then the residents retreat back to silent graves……but their echoes forever change a viewer and reader’s life.
Most read Spoon River in English class. I think all of us should revisit this town, as we grow older. It is then that we can fully appreciate its relevance.
“I tramped through the country
To get the feeling
That I was not a separate thing from the earth.
I used to lose myself
By lying with eyes half-open in the woods.
Sometimes I talked with animals…”
― Edgar Lee Masters, Spoon River Anthology