Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Memento homo ...

When I was in school, I took a class which required me to read and study Percy Bysshe Shelley's sonnet "Ozymandias". The story sunk into my mind and memory and often resurfaces when I think about certain things. Lent is one of those things.

Its story is haunting and disturbingly relatable to so much of my own life. For me, one major goal of Lent is to recognize and struggle with the "Ozymandias" in myself.


I met a traveler from an antique land
Who said: Two vast and trunkless legs of stone
Stand in the desert. Near them, on the sand,
Half sunk, a shattered visage lies, whose frown,
And wrinkled lip, and sneer of cold command,
Tell that its sculptor well those passions read,
Which yet survive, stamped on these lifeless things,
The hand that mocked them, and the heart that fed,
And on the pedestal these words appear:
"My name is Ozymandias, King of Kings:
Look upon my works, ye Mighty, and despair!"
Nothing beside remains. Round the decay
Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare
The lone and level sands stretch far away.
~Percy Bysshe Shelley

Memento homo, quia pulvis es, et in pulverem reverteris.
"Remember, O Man, that thou art dust; and unto dust shalt thou return."


Joshua 24:15 said...

Good post! Something to think about during Lent...

Laura The Crazy Mama said...

(rolling my eyes)Ozymandiasshmandias. Only YOU could "relate" to this obscure reference.

You could have just said the "dust to dust" phrase and we would have gotten the idea.

NOW, I just feel dusty AND unedjumacated.

Thanks for the extra suffering for Lent! Yer a real peach ;P