Tuesday, January 19

The Little Prince

If you have not read this book, I highly recommend it. It was written by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry in 1943 and remains relevant and touching nearly 70 years later.

It is a story of  eloquent observations... and with each reading, different elements are highlighted to the reader. It is heart-wrenching, up-lifting, inspiring. It is a book like none other. I am reading it again, for the billionth time, per the recommendation of my sis(in-law). (Thanks, Dani!!) And this time, I read it with Demetri in mind...our own sweet little prince...

If you have not read it, I do not want spoil it for you...if you have read it, you will understand these quotes.... Either way, they are beautiful....

I did not know what to say to him. I felt awkward and blundering. I did not know how I could reach him, where I could overtake him and go on hand in hand with him once more.
It is such a secret place, the land of tears.

On ne voit bien qu'avec le cœur. L'essentiel est invisible pour les yeux.
(It is only with the heart that one can see rightly. What is essential is invisible to the eye.)

"The stars are beautiful, because of a flower that cannot be seen...The desert is beautiful...What makes the desert beautiful is that somewhere it hides a well..." said the little prince

Yes...the stars, the desert--what gives them their beauty is something invisible!"

As the little prince dropped off to sleep, I took him in my arms and set out walking once more. I felt deeply moved, and stirred. It seemed to me that I was carrying a very fragile treasure. It seemed to me, even, that there was nothing more fragile on all the Earth.....I said to myself "What I see here is nothing but a shell. What is most important is invisible....What moves me so deeply, about this little prince who is sleeping here, is his loyalty to a flower--the image of a rose that shines through his whole being like the flame of a lamp, even when he is asleep..." And I felt him to be more fragile, as if he himself were a flame that might be extinguished by a little puff of wind....And as I walked on so, I found the well, at daybreak.

He laughed, touched the rope, and set the pulley to working. And the pulley moaned..."Do you hear ?"said the little prince. "We have wakened the well and it is singing."

"The thing that is important is the thing not seen... It is just as it is with the flower. If you love a flower that lives on a star, it is sweet to look at the sky at night. All the stars are a-bloom with flowers... It is just as it is with the water. Because of the pulley, and the rope, what you gave me to drink was like music... And at night you will look up at the stars. Where I live everything is so small that I cannot show you where my star is to be found. It is better, like that. My star will just be one of the stars for you. And so you will love to watch all the stars in the heavens...They will all be your friends...

"You--you alone--will have the stars as no one else has them... In one of the stars I shall be living. In one of the stars I shall be laughing. And so it will be as if all the stars were laughing, when you look at the sky at night... And when your sorrow is comforted (time soothes all sorrows) you will be content that you have known me. You will always be my friend. You will want to laugh with me. And you will sometimes open your window, so, for that pleasure...
"It will be as if, in place of the stars, I had given you a great number of little bells that knew how to laugh." And the little prince laughed again.
When I succeeded in catching up with him he was walking along with a quick and resolute step. He said to me merely: "Ah! There you are..." And he took me by the hand. But he was still worrying. "You will suffer. I shall look as though I were dead; and that will not be true...You understand...It is too far. I cannot carry this body with me. It is too heavy. ... But it will be like an old abandoned shell. There is nothing sad about old shells."

 ....He made one more effort:
"You know, it will be very nice. I, too, shall look at the stars. All the stars will be wells with a rusty pulley. All the stars will pour out fresh water for me to drink...."

"That will be so amusing! You will have five hundred million little bells, and I shall have five hundred million springs of fresh water." And he said nothing more, because he was crying...

And so, I shall look up to the heavens with joy because I know that living there with Christ, laughing there, drinking deeply there is our little prince, Demetri, who is no longer here with us but lives forever in a place that is prepared and waiting for us, one day, when our journey is over, to join him.

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