Monday, July 13, 2009

Who's the bell tolling for?

Every time I do something new I find it hard to believe it goes on everyday, like clockwork, without me ever being aware of it before.
I have jury duty for the first time this week. We filled the Jury Assembly room yesterday morning, just as it was filled last week and will be next week. And next week. And the next week, and the next, and the next. . .
I sat a few times with a friend going through chemotherapy a while back. The idea that in that room, all those white, reclining chairs with iv poles had people rotating in and out all day, every day truly stunned me. Or to go in for minor surgery and realize people are sitting in those little gowns behind all those curtains every day of every week waiting for operations.
Life altering, unforgettable dramas play out in the places we drive by without even a second look. Until it's our drama. Funeral homes, emergency wards, doctors offices, churches, surgical centers, court rooms, hospitals, police stations.
All this reminded me of the poem written in 1624, which I learned in Junior High, "No Man is an Island" by John Donne. It ends:
"Therefore, send not to know
For whom the bell tolls,
It tolls for thee."
I think I get it now.

No comments: