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For love within a family, love that's lived in
But not looked at, love within the light of which
All else is seen, the love within which
All other love finds speech.
This love is silent.
T.S. Eliot penned the above lines as part of a play in verse titled The Elder Statesman, which was first performed in 1958 and published a year later (1959). The play was Eliot's last, his first having been Sweeney Agonistes, which was published in 1926 then performed for the first time in 1934.
The Elder Statesman is about an aging statesman in poor health, Claverton, who is haunted by ghosts of past errors, particularly so when the two "ghosts" materialize once again and wish to spend time with Claverton. He treated both Gomez and Mrs. Carghill badly in their youth, but they have risen above the past and now only wish to see Claverton once again as they are all in the lengthening shadows of their years. Gomez and Mrs. Carghill embody Eliot's message that life is to lead toward spirituality and illumination, not materialism and dissembling deceit.
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