May 10, 2015

A Mother...

I saw this quote by French author Guy de Maupassant which I thought was perfect for today...

One loves one's mother almost without knowing it, and one doesn't realize how deep that love goes until the moment of the last separation.

Here's the quote in French, as I feel my meager translation didn't do it justice:

On aime sa mère presque sans le savoir, et on ne prend conscience de toute la profondeur des racines de cet amour qu'au moment de la séparation dernière.


  1. It is only when we are geezers that we realize how much grief we were for our mothers when we were the age our children are now. We are sad that our children do not care too much about us, yet what did we care about our parents?

    This was on the topic, but I mostly wanted to quote a fragment from the book I am currently reading, a book with some breathtaking passages. Like the following one:

    "[...] Jacques Brel wrote a song about her. In French; the language of bourgeois Bruxelles.
    He was always voluble in contempt for 'Les Flamands': that's endemic here, seethes and smoulders, will take generations still, before it dies out. But Marieke is a Vlaamsch girl and he compares her to the Flanders sky: there is a sudden rare intensity of warmth and love. The immense sky, of piled cloudscapes never the same. In silhouette upon it the towers and spires of the cloud-capped cities. 'Bruges et Gand' - Brugge, we should say in Vlaamsch, and Ghent. Marieke herself - suddenly he apostrophises her, and in her own language. It's unexpected, and since the man is seen now as the fine artist he was, there's a metro station in Bruce named after him, and up in Brugge in a public garden there's a statue of Marieke. Quite probably bad, I haven't seen it, but I can be sure of one thing; it doesn't look like her. Because I know her."

    1. I know that song! And yes, the first time I heard it, I was so surprised to hear him sing in Flemish (although because of his French accent at first I didn't realize it was Flemish :p). Brel was a true poet. I love listening to his songs and reading his verses. And his take on Belgium is very evocative. It's interesting that he spent so much time in Paris instead, although if one wants to make a lot of money in art,one has to go to France (there's this amazing Italian/Belgian singer, Lara Fabian, who left for Canada to make herself known because otherwise it wouldn't have been possible. Of course, that was quite a few years ago, and perhaps things have changed since then, but things here tend to move extremely slowly, so perhaps not...).