From Here to Eternity

Hopefully I don’t start crying in the middle of this post.  I just finished the book that I’ve been reading since early December.  It was beautiful.  It was crass.  And it captured my heart.

While I fight the urge to send a mass text message to the effect of “WWWOOOOHOOOO! I FINISHED IT AND EVERYONE ELSE ON THE PLANET SHOULD READ IT especially you, Boyfriend & friends, because you’re stationed there.” I thought I’d get some of my feelings down. I’m going to watch the movie tonight.  That’s how I like to reward myself for finishing a long book, as if the things I learned from it weren’t reward enough.

The book was written about two soldiers in particular at Schofield Barracks, HI in the months before the attack on Pearl Harbor.  Pearl Harbor looms in the distance because you know it’s about to happen, not because any of the soldiers are worried about it at all.  They’re far too busy chasing tail, falling in love, and trying to tell the difference between the two to notice that a war is under way.  All of that, of course, while under the influence of copious amounts of alcohol.

But you can’t help but fall in love with them.  Each character’s feelings are laid out with such meticulous repetition that you are not only reading about the lives of men, but becoming friends with them.  At least, that’s how I felt.  I do get a little overattached to my books.

I don’t like to give away endings or hint at a resolution, so I don’t plan to here.  My favorite quotation is from a segment of a book that would be crass of me to share (because I hope everyone else reads it now).  But I’m going to quote one little, teeny, tiny piece of the book before I sign off. . .

“All love has hate in it.  Because you are tied to anyone you love, and it takes away part of your freedom and you resent it, you cant help it.  And while you are resenting the loss of your own freedom, you are trying to force the other to give up to you every last little bit of his own.  Love can’t help but make hate.  As long as we’re living on this earth, love will always have hate in it.  Maybe that’s the reason we’re on this earth, to learn to love without hating.”

Maybe it’s just touching to me because I know where it comes from, why it was said.  But isn’t that why we read books?  So that we can feel what was felt by another human? And keep it just to ourselves while wishing desperately that someone else would read it and share it with us?

Maybe it’s just me.

I’m going to watch the movie tonight.  That’s how I like to reward myself for finishing a long book, as if the things I learned from it weren’t reward enough.
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