An Acceptable Time

More

There are invisible strings, hundreds and thousands of them, that run back deep into our childhoods - Lincoln's "mystic chords of memory," if you will - and often you don't know that one exists until something happens to pluck it. Madeleine L'Engle is dead, at eighty-eight: I never got very deep into anything she wrote except the Time trilogy and its companion volume, Many Waters, but those books I probably read six times each at least, and the string her death plucked has been vibrating in my mind all day - for Charles Wallace and Meg Murray and Calvin O'Keefe and Mrs. Whatsit, but also for the child I was when I encountered her books, the near-yet-faraway past in which I read and then re-read them. For John Podhoretz, whose building she lived in when he was a boy, the chord is thicker, the note stronger. If you loved her books, go read his tribute.

Jump to comments

Ross Douthat is a former writer and editor at The Atlantic.

Get Today's Top Stories in Your Inbox (preview)

Why Are Americans So Bad at Saving Money?

The US is particularly miserable at putting aside money for the future. Should we blame our paychecks or our psychology?


Elsewhere on the web

Join the Discussion

After you comment, click Post. If you’re not already logged in you will be asked to log in or register. blog comments powered by Disqus

Video

The Death of Film

You'll never hear the whirring sound of a projector again.

Video

How to Hunt With Poison Darts

A Borneo hunter explains one of his tribe's oldest customs: the art of the blowpipe

Video

A Delightful, Pixar-Inspired Cartoon

An action figure and his reluctant sidekick trek across a kitchen in search of treasure.

Video

I Am an Undocumented Immigrant

"I look like a typical young American."

Video

Why Did I Study Physics?

Using hand-drawn cartoons to explain an academic passion

Writers

Up
Down