online: 16 october 2015
modified: 13 october 2015
10 october 2015 in a medieval market
...where nowadays are coffee shops and modern people sitting and walking
by as if from a new picture book or legend beside the medieval market
(a sandstone town or county hall on massive stone columns between which
is empty space today)...
...the people here look well fed and happy to just sit and look and talk
and walk in modern dress... the buildings that surround this safe
pedestrian space (with only occasional cars passing through) are set at
shallow angles... not to an imposed rectangular plan...
...and here comes my daughter Sarah who works in the modern job of
helping the priest and officials of an ancient church to reorganise
church business in more modern ways... and today she and others are
planning a modern passion play...
...i show her this mention of her work... at which she says nothing and
takes me to a museum inside the town hall... it's reached by gentle
ascent on wooden steps (one up for each two along)... and inside (midst
medieval swords and stones etc) are two most modern things: an MG sports
car (built nearby in the 1950s and restored as if new)... and mention of
the European nuclear fusion experiment at Culham lab nearby... and a
film of the removal of a stone window frame to get the MG inside by a
specially adapted crane or hoist... part-powered by human muscle as
several people pushed and nudged the car (tipped on its side) to squeeze
through the window space...
...these sights are to be seen in Abingdon near Oxford... where Sarah
arranged for me to be fitted today with new spectacles... of modern
lightweight materials... and with careful study of user requirements...
...hmmm... i like so much this mixing of old things with new... it seems
to me not dualistic... but healing the split of modern things from
ancient... from 'as we were' to 'as we can become'... while avoiding the
mistake of forcing the new into old forms... not sacrificing the future
to the past...
...(that misses the freedom of the new... in which we ourselves can
change... while creating a new order)...
...yes perhaps... of course... this is the modern way... lost sight of i
think... in what was called post-modern... (which had the virtue of not
destroying the past to make way for the new... but lets them co-exist!)
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