Sunday, July 8, 2018

the present toil

"For what is the welcome of the host if behind it there is not the labour of the women? Through the years the three women had lit the fires and spread the sheets, scrubbed the floors and washed the dishes, polished the furniture and baked the bread, tended the children and nursed the sick, comforted the sorrowful and prayed for them. Caroline could never understand how women could dislike looking after a house, especially an old house like this one. Did they never pause sometimes and sit quietly as she was sitting now, and remember the other women and feel their present toil a part of that past toil? A sort of freshness came when one did that, as though the work were a clean wind or a running river that lived forever to cleanse impurities away."

                                                                  -  Elizabeth Goudge, The Heart of the Family


  1. I am one of those 'other women' who don't enjoy household tasks. Most of the time I would much rather be doing something else. This isn't to say that I don't work hard and I always do my cleaning etc as well and as thoroughly as possible. I do feel a sense of achievement when my work is done but...... I must try to think of this work in a different way - as a clean wind or a running river. What a way with words Elizabeth Goudge had!

    1. She really, really did! My mind is often boggled at the things she thought of.