Tuesday, February 4, 2014

A Dagger to My Heart?

A very angry epitaph (I wonder if he composed it himself or if a supportive friend did it for him);
Seth J. Miller, 1848, age 46, of Rehoboth, Mass.
My wife from me departed
And robbed me like a knave
Which caused me broken hearted
To descend into my grave.
My children took an active part
And to doom me did contrive,
Which struck a dagger to my heart
Which I could not survive.

A problem with epitaphs like this is that you don’t get to hear the other side.  Perhaps he was an awful person whose wife finally fled to save her sanity – or her life.  Back in that era, if a couple broke up, the husband routinely got the children.  That she got them is a warning flag.

Work on A Needle Case continues.  Had a small glitch yesterday when the plot point I so carefully set up fizzled.  Fortunately, there is someone I can talk with when this happens, so now I think I can re-write the scene laying down the clue subtly enough that only on a second reading will it appear.  That’s the great fun of writing mysteries, playing fair but not making it too easy.  I hope I’ll accomplish this in the scene I’m working on today.

Since childhood I have read Dear Abby.  Last Thursday I found a real gem in her advice.  “There is give and take in all healthy relationships. A balance is reached when you can give without feeling used, and take without feeling guilty that you're being given too much.”  Perfect!

I wonder if this harsh winter will be “balanced” by a roaring hot summer.  I hope not.


Linda O. Johnston said...

I've always enjoyed reading Dear Abby and similar columns, too, Monica--always some fodder for future stories there. And good luck fixing your glitch. I'm sure it'll come out great!

Betty Hechtman said...

Monica, I understand what you're saying about winter. I've only been in Chicago since Saturday and I'm tired of the weather already. And it's not nearly as bad here as it is for you.

Tracy Weber said...

I LOVE the Dear Abby quote!