Several weeks ago, before Nemo graced us with his presence, I jumped in the zip car and drove to Mount Auburn Cemetery in neighboring Cambridge. In my general research of the area, I stumbled upon the cemetery and was intrigued by its mention of many famous names, beautiful monuments and even a watchtower that overlooks the city. Winslow Homer, Harriet Jacobs, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow and Amy Lowell are among those interned here and the list carries on and on. The place is quite large: seventy-five acres. Even with a car, I felt as if I could hardly see it all. There are dozens upon dozens of paths, all with lovely titles, like the Snowdrop or the Buttercup Path. The day was absolutely frigid, so I couldn't explore as much as I would have liked-but this is a place I plan to see again in the spring, when I can wander at greater ease (and actually climb the watchtower). Perhaps I'll find irises along the Iris Path, daffodils along the Daffodil Path.
Never before had I seen such a diversity of monuments, that were more fascinating than cryptic. People actually come here for wedding photographs. There is even a book club, which to me seems like an absolutely wonderful way to commemorate the buried. I had never heard of such a thing. But why not? It makes complete sense. (February's book was a historical novel titled The Bone Garden-a very fitting name-that features Dr.Oliver Wendell Holmes in his youth. He is buried at the cemetery.)
This weekend there is a Longfellow Birthday celebration and I am slightly tempted to attend... Harvard professor Stephen Burt will lead a discussion and that is a reason in itself to go. Ah, but a snowstorm is in the forecast. What a surprise! We shall see, we shall see.