Sunday, January 25, 2009

May Sarton; Nelson Cemetery; Nelson, NH

I loved reading her journals -- Journal of A Solitude -- and then a string of others. She made her own life seem so pretty, taking careful notice of nature and beauty. Two years after her 1995 death, a biography by a woman named Margot Peters was published; it struck me as authoritative and truthful; it portrayed May Sarton as a nasty person, someone you'd never want to meet. Who knew? Who knows? Everyone slants, everyone lies. Only fiction is true.

Her grave marker was designed by one of her friends. I think it verges on ugly. May Sarton, who had it set before her death, thought it stunningly beautiful. It is, at least, out of the ordinary, and that's generally a good thing.


  1. Perhaps it's the bird (though I get the impression it's a phoenix rising from the ashes?) that makes it odd looking. It is definitely unique. But can you imagine seeing your grave marker before you die? Though I guess it's easier than seeing it after.

  2. I read and enjoyed May's books. She hand picked Margot Peters to write her bio. Most of the bio, if not all, was done before May's death with her approval. In the bio, May comes across as a mean, sex addicted, alcoholic. Never would have guessed it from reading her books.