Around the Corner

Marian poemHow does someone decide what is important enough to save over the years? I’m still trying to figure out what Aunt Marian was like. I found this typewritten poem on the back of an index card in the trunk with Aunt Marian’s items that I found in my parent’s attic.

I googled  Around the Corner and found that the poem was written by Charles Hanson Towne (1877-1949).  He was an author and editor, and edited various magazines across the years including  Smart Set, DelineatorMcClure’s, Designer, and Harper’s Bazaar.

Why did this poem resonate with Aunt Marian? Did she know soldiers who had been killed in World War II? Did she put the poem on the index card before or after she joined the Women’s’ Army Corps (WACs)?

21 thoughts on “Around the Corner”

    1. Now that you say it, I know that you are right. You comment makes me realize that I need to stay in touch with people I care about–and that it is more than just sending a card at the holidays.

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  1. I think your Aunt was a caring person, maybe she realized that friendships were important, and just wanted to make sure that she didn’t forget! I think I need that poem to jiggle my memory !

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  2. Maybe it was to remind her of getting in touch with old friends? So often I think of people I should touch base with, and time passes and I don’t lift a finger toward that end. Why don’t I just do it?
    Diana xo

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    1. I hate to admit it, but I’m the same way. I wonder why it is so hard to touch bases with old friends? Your comments and the comments of several others make me realize that there are several people I need to call or email.

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  3. I’ve read that poem before. It kinda makes me sad because its so true. Why did she save it? Maybe as you said, she lost a friend she had meant to stay in touch with.
    I should probably clean out some of my stash of kept items, i.e. old letters, notes, things I thought were important. Hummm?

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    1. I’m one who find old letters, notes, etc. very meaningful . . . so I’d vote for taking them out and reading them–and maybe getting rid of a few things that you can’t remember why you ever saved them–and then putting the rest of the items back in the boxes or drawers that you got them out of so that you can look at them again in another 5 or 10 years. 🙂

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    1. I’m not sure whether or not I had a better handle on my grandmother’s personality as a teen at the beginning of that blog, but I definitely had a deeper understanding of the context and setting. She grew up on a farm that was located very near the farm where I grew up. And, my memories of what it was like to be a teen living on a farm made it somewhat easier for me to imagine what it was like for another teen living on a farm–even if to was half a century earlier. That said, doing A Hundred Years Ago definitely brought me much closer to Grandma over the course of the 4 years.

      With Aunt Marian–I’m semi-familiar with the area where she grew up. It’s 15 miles or so from the area where I grew up, and I don’t know much about the military so I have a lot to learn. I’m a person who takes a slow in-depth approach to family history–and anticipate that research and writing about Aunt Marian will bring me closer and closer to her.

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  4. I think Marian had a boyfriend when they were both young, but lost track of each other as life got in the way. I don’t think he was dead when she copied that poem, but it served as a reminder that she needed to get in touch. Whether she did or not is another question.

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  5. We can speculate forever, and not know why she kept the poem. Perhaps it reminded her of a story her father told. Perhaps she had a friend who lost someone in the war. Hard to say. What it does tell us is that she thought about things, was sensitive, paid some (or perhaps a great deal) of attention to the world around her.

    It reminds me very much of Harry Chapin’s “Cat’s in the Cradle.

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    1. I love that song. I like how you stepped back and thought more generally about Aunt Marian’s personality and interests. I think that you are probably right that she paid attention to the world around her.

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