May 08, 2015 | Graham

Farewell to Camelot

JFK died so young that it is hard to realise that he was one of the generation that defined itself by the Great Depression and WWII. If he were alive to day he would have been almost 98.

At his funeral they played Samuel Barber’s Adagio for Strings Op11.

They framed his administration as Camelot, but in truth that whole generation built Camelot, that shining city by the river with all mod cons, and ideas of right not might, that gave us the Universal Declaration of the Right of Man and ourselves.

In Australia they were the generation that mattered most. We talk about our convict past, but in truth it was overwhelmed by the waves of settlers who came to Australia in the late 19th and 20th Centuries.

That was mum’s generation, and that was the generation of the diggers who are now almost too frail to walk in Anzac Day parades, or who, we hope, are on the Isle of Avalon, being “healed of their hurts.”

They were the generation who settled the country, took the risks in two world wars, put down the roads and the railway lines, established Victorian Christian virtues as the norm, scrimped and saved, and gave their frequently ungrateful offspring a future.

So yesterday, along with many others, I said good bye to Camelot, when we committed mum from West End Uniting Church, to the strains of Barber’s Adagio played by Stephen Nisbet on the organ.

The old order changeth, yielding place to new,
And God fulfils Himself in many ways,
Lest one good custom should corrupt the world.
Comfort thyself: what comfort is in me?

Posted by Graham at 7:48 am | Comments (3) |
Filed under: Society