“But on a well-banked plot Odysseus found his father in solitude
Spading the earth around a young fruit tree.” Homer, Odyssey, Bk XXIV
The father of Odysseus, Laertes, is an old man. Yet he is spading the earth around a young fruit tree. Spading the earth, as all real work, requires foresight, effort, discipline. Here is a man laboring for a fruit he will not see. A taste that is beyond his lips nonetheless moves his hands, because it is in his heart. Such is a father. He has the power to see what cannot be seen—because it simply isn’t there. Yet. His life is a series of will-be’s, for others. If he is faithful; if he is true to his own love. Oh, whence the power to be true to the love he has in his heart? True love gives not only fore-sight, it makes that vision creative; creating a fruit yielded by no other soil–one great day.
This Wednesday Household Quote is dedicated to my father, a planter of trees, who passed from this life early Monday morning, September 16, 2013. The photo is of my father, Chris, and my son, Nicholas.
Homer (8th century B.C.) is the great epic poet, author of the Iliad and the Odyssey.
YOU MAY ALSO LIKE:
“Of the art of acquisition [of food] then there is one kind which by nature is a part of the management of a household, in so far as the art of household management must either find ready to hand, or itself provide, such things necessary to life…” Aristotle, Politics...read more
“The hand is a tool of tools.” Aristotle, On the Soul Recently I was watching a blacksmith work. I was mesmerized. There is something so satisfying and so fitting—indeed, so human—about the ability to do that kind of work. What most struck me is how glad he must be to...read more
“Some men are thought to be obsequious, namely, those who to give pleasure praise everything and never oppose.” “And while for its own sake he [the man virtuous in social interaction] chooses to contribute pleasure, and avoids the giving of pain, he will be guided...read more
Husband, father, and professor of Philosophy. Bacon from Acorns springs from one conviction: there is an ancient wisdom about how to live the good life in our homes, with our families; and it is worth our time to hearken to it. Let’s rediscover it together. Learn more.