YOU DON’T KNOW WHAT YOU’VE GOT ‘TIL IT’S GONE

northernloon

A bibliophile friend pointed out to me this quote, hokku-like in spirit, from an old travel book.  The context is that a missionary is explaining Heaven to a Canadian Indian named Saltatha, who then said,

My father, you have spoken well; you have told me Heaven is very beautiful.  Tell me now one thing more;  Is it more beautiful than the country of the musk-ox in summer, when sometimes the mist blows over the lakes, and sometimes the water is blue, and the loons cry very often?”

(From The Barren Ground of Northern Canada, by Warburton Pike, 1861-1915)

 

David

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2 Responses to YOU DON’T KNOW WHAT YOU’VE GOT ‘TIL IT’S GONE

  1. Lammieh Kloshe says:

    One more line as you may know. “That is beautiful; and if Heaven is still more beautiful, my heart will be glad, and I shall be content to rest there till I am very old.”

    The page may be found at:
    http://babel.hathitrust.org/cgi/pt?id=uiug.30112071748880;view=1up;seq=294

    The book The Sea And The Jungle by H. M.Tomlinson omits the first sentence in the original, and the “blue water” phrase. The complete quote can also be found in the book Muskoxen and Their Hunters by Peter Lent, found online at Google Books.

    Good that you used such a fine quote.

  2. Ed Leathers says:

    One is real and now, the other is simply to provide comfort. I prefer the real/now. Very nice post.

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