My mother and father had been to Switzerland, traveling in the Engadine.  When they got back, my mother told me this story.  While walking in the mountains, they had come upon a small church, and a sign outside said it had been dedicated at the time of Charlemagne.  She said it was the first time she’d realized there had actually been a Charlemagne, that he was not a creature of myth.  It was late afternoon, getting toward dusk, and as they began to walk away, my mother said all of a sudden they could hear the disembodied voices of nuns coming through the windows of the church singing the same song they had sung at the same hour every day for the last five hundred years.  “If safekeeping has a sound,” she said, “then surely this was it.”

– Abigail Thomas, Safekeeping

5 thoughts on “Safekeeping”

  1. Ah, so I know what book you’re reading. It is one of my favorites, ever. And don’t you think it is a marvel of structure and power — like a suspension bridge, able to support so much weight with such delicacy.

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