Monday, January 19, 2009

Perfect Leggishness

To appreciate anything we must always isolate it, even if the thing itself symbolise something other than isolation...If we wish to depict what a man really is we must depict a man alone in a desert or on a dark sea sand. So long as he is a single figure he means all that humanity means; so long as he is solitary he means human society; so long as he is solitary he means sociability and comradeship. Add another figure and the picture is less human--not more so. One is company, two is none...One sun is splendid; six suns would be only vulgar....And so, in the same pensive lucidity, I find the poetry of all human anatomy in standing on a single leg. To express complete and perfect leggishness the leg must stand in sublime isolation, like the tower in the wilderness. As Ibsen so finely says, the strongest leg is that which stands most alone.

"The Advantages of Having One Leg," Tremendous Trifles, G.K. Chesterton.


In case you're looking for an explanation:

1. Yes, I have taken up knitting. Gianna taught be back in October. I've been knitting ever since. I started a scarf for myself, started *and* finished a scarf for Matthias as part of his Christmas present, and I have just finished this adorable bear. (Don't worry, he has two legs at this point in time.)

2. While owning all of those books Teddy is sitting on, I've never read through any of them in their entirety - yet. Matthias happens to be in Prof. Fagerberg's class on Chesterton this semester. So, having no other academic obligations, I have decided it would be a wonderful idea to do the reading for the class along with him. Saturday night found us reading the above chapter of Tremendous Trifles. Very amusing; but I really don't understand the man very well...yet.

In short, I saw my bear needing only a leg, and thought of Chesterton.

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