Author Topic: "Jack, I swear..." What do you think Ennis meant by that?  (Read 241127 times)

Offline UntamedFriesian

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Re: "Jack, I swear..." What do you think Ennis meant by that?
« Reply #160 on: January 28, 2007, 03:53:25 pm »
I think what Ennis meant by that line was that if he had it to do all over again he wouldn't have been so afraid to commit to Jack and he would have started that life with him and been happy.  I think when he was talking to his daughter about her upcoming marriage he realized then that life is what you make it and he'd made a big mistake by not committing to the one person in his life he really truly loved and now it was too late.

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Offline HerrKaiser

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Re: "Jack, I swear..." What do you think Ennis meant by that?
« Reply #161 on: January 31, 2007, 11:55:47 am »
It was the closest Ennis could come in making any kind of declaration of his love for Jack.


to me, 20 years of making very difficult time commitments to meet and the obvious desire to be with Jack moreso than his wife, as well as his apparent monogamous relationship with Jack (no other men), is quite a declaration of love. It seems many people like or need to see headlines and fireworks in order to believe what another person is feeling. Parenthetically, consider the rampant need by the media and public and politicians to get "apologies" for errors in judgment people make; it is never enough to know by body language, actions, changes in course, etc, that a person is repentant...people want the graveling, the 'on your knees and apologize' thing. Likewise, it seems that our pop culture has difficulty accepting a man like Ennis who is not a grandstanding, overt, love-exhibitionist type person. He is inward; his actions, movements, expressions, demonstrate his love for Jack. Witness his picking up Jack's saddle gear, unasked, and loading it into the pickup (last scene together). Then his nervous rubbing of the chrome, knowing his announcement of having to miss the August meeting would set Jack off. Ennis is insightful, caring, doing, helpful, commited and loving. It did not take Jack's death to make him realize what he had; yes, he did realize what he lost because Jack was gone, and his "I swear", again in my brain, is his commitment to continue his love and cherishing of Jack forever. Ennis will not be going to Mexico or the nearest gay bar for companionship; Jack will remain his man until his own end.

Offline Rayn

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Re: "Jack, I swear..." What do you think Ennis meant by that?
« Reply #162 on: February 14, 2007, 05:07:05 am »
 to me, 20 years of making very difficult time commitments to meet and the obvious desire to be with Jack more so than his wife, as well as his apparent monogamous relationship with Jack (no other men), is quite a declaration of love.

Ennis who is not a grandstanding, overt, love-exhibitionist type person. He is inward; his actions, movements, expressions, demonstrate his love for Jack. "

Yes, this is very true and the rest you've written is very well said and insightful.  I agree with most of it, but still think, through no fault of his own, Ennis just had too many "irons in the fire of love" to see clearly that his best shot was Jack and when considering him, I am always drawn back to the knowledge of his intense fear of actually living with another man, that fear, hammered into him as a boy, crippled his chances for a comfortable love relationship with any man.  While Jack's death is terribly tragic, Ennis's fear is a great tragedy too.  Had Ennis never be traumatized by his father, he might have been able to work something better out with Jack where both were happier.

Peace,
Rayn


« Last Edit: February 14, 2007, 05:12:35 am by Rayn »

Offline HerrKaiser

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Re: "Jack, I swear..." What do you think Ennis meant by that?
« Reply #163 on: February 14, 2007, 12:01:40 pm »
thanks Rayn, your points are interesting and I enjoy your insights.

But, we have to remember that even Jack said to Ennis, "why haven't you found anybody to marry". Alma did this as well, even though both knew perfectly well where Ennis' desires were focused. Such a set of mixed-messages can be confusing to anyone, particularly if he is living in the pre-out of the closet period, and definitely in a part of the country that is still limited in its open-armed acceptance of gay relationships. Ennis was being pulled in several directions and for a non verbal person, his responses to such would appropriately be silence, to a large extent. Had, after all their time together, I been Ennis, my response to Jack's query about getting married again would have been "what are you talking about? You b- -tch and moan about the time we don't spend together and now you're wondering why I don't get remarried?"

Remember also Jack never divorced his wife; while he claimed their marriage could be done "on the phone", he said he would hook up with Ennis but he never really put his money where his mouth was. Hence, Ennis, as insightful and feeling as he was, and not a mind reader or able to predict the future, used the data he had to make a very comfortable, workable, and enjoyable long term relationship.

Plus the 'actually living with another man' was, to me, a semi-permeable road block to what they may have had, but not a deal breaker. I do not think Ennis ever said that is what he wanted; rather he said it was what could get them in trouble. Very different.

Peace Rayn! and a great day!


moremojo

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Re: "Jack, I swear..." What do you think Ennis meant by that?
« Reply #164 on: February 14, 2007, 02:46:44 pm »
Remember also Jack never divorced his wife; while he claimed their marriage could be done "on the phone", he said he would hook up with Ennis but he never really put his money where his mouth was.
I think Jack very clearly would have left Lureen if he had a guarantee that Ennis would be there to pick up the pieces, and we have evidence in two scenes: at the campfire, post-reunion, when Jack states with aplomb that they could start up the "sweet life" with money that L.D. would likely give Jack for divorcing his daughter, and post-divorce, when Jack redlines it to Riverton with only Ennis's terse postcard to fuel his happiness that their moment has arrived.

I think Jack stayed with Lureen for the same reason he married her--for the material rewards and protection that the union afforded him. But he would have chucked it all if Ennis had shown any willingness to forge the kind of life that Jack really wanted for the both of them.

Offline Front-Ranger

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Re: "Jack, I swear..." What do you think Ennis meant by that?
« Reply #165 on: February 14, 2007, 04:11:50 pm »
But, we have to remember that even Jack said to Ennis, "why haven't you found anybody to marry". Alma did this as well, even though both knew perfectly well where Ennis' desires were focused.

I think I know xactly why Jack said this. He thought if Ennis married again then Jack would be able to quit him and at last have peace. But it wouldn't have happened. I know, I've been in that boat before.

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moremojo

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Re: "Jack, I swear..." What do you think Ennis meant by that?
« Reply #166 on: February 14, 2007, 04:32:04 pm »
I think I know xactly why Jack said this. He thought if Ennis married again then Jack would be able to quit him and at last have peace. But it wouldn't have happened. I know, I've been in that boat before.
My take on this was that Jack was concerned for Ennis's happiness and comfort--he thought that Ennis, by marrying, might feel less lonely and have more purpose than by being on his own. Jack and Alma both broach the subject of remarriage with Ennis, despite their hurt and abiding love for him.

Offline Front-Ranger

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Re: "Jack, I swear..." What do you think Ennis meant by that?
« Reply #167 on: February 14, 2007, 04:44:34 pm »
My take on this was that Jack was concerned for Ennis's happiness and comfort--he thought that Ennis, by marrying, might feel less lonely and have more purpose than by being on his own. Jack and Alma both broach the subject of remarriage with Ennis, despite their hurt and abiding love for him.
Yes, I agree with that as well.
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Offline HerrKaiser

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Re: "Jack, I swear..." What do you think Ennis meant by that?
« Reply #168 on: February 14, 2007, 06:55:46 pm »
I think less of Jack if indeed he married for the money and stayed married for the money. Maybe, if that is true, Ennis would have sensed this and hence been a bit squeamish about the reasons Jack gives for a 'living together commitment'.

This is getting off subject, but all's fair if you are OK with this....

Jack may have taken the high road and attempted to martyr himself by suggesting to Ennis he get remarried. Such an act would have surely reduced if not eliminated the time he and Jack spent together. But, I think not. I believe it was Jack's way of either 1) trying to get Ennis to say 'no, I want you' or 2) setting the stage of his leaving Ennis for Randall.

Either way, it was not 100% honest, in my opinion. On the other hand, Ennis' reaction was pure and utter Ennis....his shifting, his eyes, his facial demeanor all exuded the powerful love he felt for Jack, but Jack seemed to have had a blockage to this way in which Ennis communicated.

Back to the "...I swear..." subject; this goes full circle. Ennis in ONLY TWO WORDS spoke a lifetime of love and commitment. Jack would never have heard this or felt it, which is not to demean wonderful Jack...he just needed alot of overt attention and he admitted this.

Offline Cameron

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Re: "Jack, I swear..." What do you think Ennis meant by that?
« Reply #169 on: February 14, 2007, 07:28:18 pm »
In my opinion I really believe that Jack was asking Ennis if he would get married again because like he did a lot he was pushing Ennis to say what he couldn't say.

Just like when Ennis said ' I'm sending a prayer of thanks' and Jack asked 'for what?'.  Wasn't it obvious what the prayer of thanks was for?

But to me Jack had to push Ennis, but Ennis said as much as he was able to.

Then when Jack asked Ennis about getting married, I think he knew that Ennis could not marry again, and why he wouldn't, but again Jack was trying to get Ennis to say things that he couldn't say in words.

I do think that Ennis was very obvious with his feelings all along, but Jack could not understand all the signals Ennis was always sending him.

JMHO

As to 'I swear', you know that is one of the few lines that I have still not really be able to put any meanings to.  I have many ideas but actually, I dunno, this one is still a mystery to me in many ways.

I think it obviously could mean a whole lot of things depending on one's own interpretion.