The Space Between
My daughter Johanna is living in Finland for a year as a Rotary exchange student. We stay in touch through email and Facebook and Skype - options unavailable and words unrecognizable to my parents 26 years ago when my sister went to Finland, also through Rotary. Johanna left her cell phone behind, but her info is still loaded into mine. I was zipping through my contacts yesterday and there she was. I paused and found myself actually touching her name on the little screen with my finger. Kinda pathetic maybe, but I do miss that kid. I guess I was trying to feel what’s not there, like when you lose a tooth and compulsively tongue the empty socket. Absence is felt. I thought of Debussy’s quote about how "music is the space between the notes." Then this morning I heard the words of Rainer Maria Rilke on the radio: "I want to beg you, as much as I can, dear sir, to be patient toward all that is unsolved in your heart and to try to love the questions themselves like locked rooms and like books that are written in a very foreign tongue. Do not now seek the answers, which cannot be given you because you would not be able to live them. And the point is, to live everything. Live the questions now."