Author Topic: A Love Born From Steel - Ongoing Discussion  (Read 89427 times)

Offline MaineWriter

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Re: A Love Born From Steel - Ongoing Discussion
« Reply #460 on: December 20, 2006, 04:05:34 pm »
You should have it, Marie. I emailed it awhile ago.

Thanks for your interest!

L
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Offline mariez

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Re: A Love Born From Steel - Ongoing Discussion
« Reply #461 on: December 21, 2006, 03:05:52 pm »
Hi!

Making my way slowly - up to Chapter 12.  Just had to take a minute to ramble a little about Chapter 9! 

How perfect was that wedding?   :)  I love how in sync J&E are with each other - no words needed between those two.  Jack instinctively picking out the "lovers' braid" ring - which was, of course, just waiting for J&E.  And the silversmith, Sarah - she had such a spirtual quality about her and appreciated so fully what was transpiring - how appropriate that she served as the witness to their marriage!  How often it is the case that the seize-the-day, straight-from-the-heart moments in our lives turn out to be the most special!

Just wonderful, Leslie!   :) :)

Thanks - Marie
The measure of a country's greatness is its ability to retain compassion in times of crisis         ~~~~~~~~~Thurgood Marshall

The worst loneliness is not to be comfortable with yourself.    ~~~~~~~~~ Mark Twain

Offline MaineWriter

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Re: A Love Born From Steel - Ongoing Discussion
« Reply #462 on: December 23, 2006, 09:06:31 am »
I love that wedding, too, and I loved writing it. It made me very, very happy for them.

L
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Offline mariez

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Re: A Love Born From Steel - Ongoing Discussion
« Reply #463 on: December 26, 2006, 03:56:07 pm »
I love that wedding, too, and I loved writing it. It made me very, very happy for them.

L


Leslie, you're love for J&E and your love of writing this story shines through every line!   :)


A few quick thoughts on Chapter 11 -

So great that Jack "prepared"  Ennis so well for his meeting with Alma at the hotel!  Attention to details can make all the difference. 

This just warmed my heart:

But it wasn’t just clothes, she realized. His face had a happy, relaxed look, and as he was grinning and laughing with his daughters, he looked like a man without a care in the world. Not only that, but as she looked at his face she realized that Ennis had a tan!


Quite a eye-opening moment for Alma! 

I loved, loved, loved Ennis's discussion wth Junior on the way back.  He was honest, open, and respectful, never talking down to her as adults sometimes feel the need to.  Just wonderful.

Out of the mouths of babes:

“My mama thinks this whole thing is bad,” Junior continued. “She’s been sayin’ that for weeks.” Jack nodded at her as she said this. “But, Uncle Jack,” she paused, “I think she’s wrong. It can’t be bad if he’s this happy.”

I'll say it again - you're a smart girl, Junior!

Thanks, Leslie!

Marie
The measure of a country's greatness is its ability to retain compassion in times of crisis         ~~~~~~~~~Thurgood Marshall

The worst loneliness is not to be comfortable with yourself.    ~~~~~~~~~ Mark Twain

Offline mariez

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Re: A Love Born From Steel - Ongoing Discussion
« Reply #464 on: December 28, 2006, 05:39:30 pm »
Okay, some more ramblings on Chapters 12, 13, and 14 -

So happy the girls love the farm - and Jack - I knew they would! How could anyone not love Jack!   :)  I'm glad Alma agreed to two more weeks.  I do feel sorry for Alma - it's kind of sad to describe the time you're having on your honeymoon as "pleasant" - and it really contrasts the difference in the relationships.  J&E have a true, deep, passionate love.   I'm happy that Junior and Jenny will have J&E as role models for a marriage.

Jack was right - Ennis did handle Jenny beautifully after she saw them kissing.  He used the same honesty and respect as he did in his conversation with Junior. 

There are so many "blasts from the past" as I'm reading - my mom's Joy of Cooking was ever present when I was growing up (she got me my own copy about ten years ago) and now the Nancy Drew books!  I loved them.  I wanted to be Nancy Drew and drive around in that cool convertible solving mysteries!   :laugh:  I still have some of the books.

Okay, I know everything can't go smoothly - but that Crocker is a real bastard - and so obvious!  Jack is right that they need to hold their tempers for now - but that had to be incredibly hard for them both.   >:(

My favorite moment:

Jenny had left her suitcase of Barbies. “I’d rather have them here to play with when I come visit,” she said. “That makes them special.” Jack slid the suitcase under the bed and as he did so, he saw a piece of paper. He pulled it out and looked at it. It took a minute to register, then he realized what he was looking at—a drawing by Jenny, of him and Ennis kissing. Jack smiled. It was pretty obvious who was who. They both were wearing jeans, but Jack’s shirt was blue and Ennis’s was brown. Their arms were wrapped around each other. Ennis had a mop of yellow hair while Jack’s was black. Their faces were touching and their eyes were closed. Jack loved the little touch of eyelashes for each of them. The best part—they were wearing their cowboy hats.

Jack smiled at the picture. “Ennis, ya wanted a picture of us kissin’,” he thought, “well, ya got it. I just never expected it t’be a drawing from yer daughter.”

He went into their bedroom and laid the picture on the dresser. The snapshot of them sitting on the porch was there, too. “That’s it,” he thought to himself. “Tomorrow I’m buyin’ picture frames, one for each of these.”


Perfect!

I love how Jack takes care of Ennis and how Ennis takes care of Jack - each in their own way.  And I have to say - all the cooking Jack does gets me hungry while I'm reading!   :laugh:

I'm glad Hal is able to come home for his last days - I know how found Ennis and Jack have become of him - and Ennis is espcially close to him.  That must mean a lot to Hal.    What a lovely person Jill is!  She's really in sync with J&E.

The woman took his hand in both her own, “It’s wonderful to meet you, Jack,” she said. “I’m Jill Bretz, the hospice nurse from the Visiting Nurses Association.” As she finished clasping his hand in hers, her fingers rubbed against his ring and she looked at it, “Oh this is lovely,” she said. “You must’ve gotten it on July 4th.” Jack nodded. She smiled, lifting up one of her earrings. “I bought these from these from Sarah that day too.”

“They’re very pretty,” said Jack, not sure what else to say.

“Yes, I thought they were beautiful. They spoke to me. Did your ring speak to you?”

“Actually, it did,” said Jack, although he had never thought of it this way.

“Sarah is spiritual,” she said. “It comes through in her jewelry.”

Jack was feeling slightly confused about all of this. Jill didn’t look like any nurse he had ever seen—he was used to the white cap and shoes variety—and her talk of spiritual jewelry seemed a little…odd. On the other hand, everything she was saying was completely true. “I mean,” he thought to himself, “we got married there. What could be more spiritual than that?”


She's going to fit in well, isn't she?  She's right - Jack is a good person - and so is Ennis.

Okay, rambled enough today!

Thanks - Marie
The measure of a country's greatness is its ability to retain compassion in times of crisis         ~~~~~~~~~Thurgood Marshall

The worst loneliness is not to be comfortable with yourself.    ~~~~~~~~~ Mark Twain

Offline MaineWriter

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Re: A Love Born From Steel - Ongoing Discussion
« Reply #465 on: December 29, 2006, 09:23:07 am »
Marie,

Thanks again for your comments. I really appreciate them! You have got me re-reading my own story along with you! LOL

Here's a little quote buried in Chapter 13, when they are talking about buying a mattress:

Jack looked at Ennis. "Did you just call yourself gay?" he said, looking surprised.

"I was speakin' in principle," said Ennis, with a smile.

Jack smiled back. "Ennis, when in hell are you goin' ta admit that you are as gay as me?"

"Mebb when I get through the ordeal of lyin' on a bed with you in a department store," said Ennis, with a laugh. "Mebbe that'll be the thing that convinces me."


As for Nancy Drew...I loved those books. I collect them now and still re-read them. And didn't every girl in the world want to be a sleuth like Nancy? I know I did!

Jill, the hospice nurse, is based on a real person. Hospice nurses are very special people.

Thanks again for reading!

Leslie
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Offline MaineWriter

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Re: A Love Born From Steel - Ongoing Discussion
« Reply #466 on: December 29, 2006, 11:06:05 am »
Here's another quote I like, this one from Chapter 14:

Jack paused, considering. “I thought ‘bout that. It was diff’rnt this time. The girls leavin’…me realizin’ how much I enjoyed havin’ them here…and,” he paused, “I hope I can say this right, but I think I was worried ‘bout you goin’ back t’Wyoming.”

Ennis looked puzzled. “Why Wyoming?”

Jack replied, “I was worried like you’d decide it was home, that’s where you wanted t’be. Didn’t want t’live in Texas. You’d see the Wyoming mountains and change your mind.”

Ennis smiled. “Jack, I know what yer sayin’ but nothin’ could be more wrong. Wyoming ain’t home anymore and I didn’t feel a twinge of that while I was there. In fact,” he said, “ya know what’s home?” Jack shook his head. “You are. You are my life now, Jack. Bein’ with you is my life, and wherever you are is home.”

Jack could feel tears welling up in his eyes and Ennis noticed. He stood up and reached out his hand to Jack, pulling him into his arms. He wiped a tear from under Jack’s eye with his thumb, then gave him a gentle kiss. “Home, babe,” he said, “is you and me. It doesn’t matter if we are at the Lazy L or in a Quonset hut. My home is in my heart, and yer there, for all time.”


Leslie
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Offline mariez

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Re: A Love Born From Steel - Ongoing Discussion
« Reply #467 on: December 29, 2006, 05:37:59 pm »
Hi Leslie,

Well, I guess today is my day for crying.  Good thing I didn't go to work!   :)  Between David's post about coming out over on the LS thread and Chapter 15 of your brilliant story - well, I've been crying and I mean  crying - you know, with the big ol' tears and the red nose and the little hiccupy breathing thing.   :)  Wow - where to begin.  Maybe here -

Ennis tried to smile, but like Jack, he could feel the tears coming. “You die, babe, and that'll break my heart, so I ‘spect I'll be followin' right on behind you, 'cause I know I can't live without you.” He pulled Jack in close, and could feel the tears spilling on to his shoulder. “I’m sorry, babe,” he whispered. “I shouldn’ta brought this up.”

“It’s okay, En,” said Jack, through a shuddering breath. “It prob’ly is good t’talk ‘bout, least so we understand.” He pulled back and looked at Ennis, wiping his tears away with the back of his hand. “What I’d like, En, is to just keel over in a field with my boots on, not go through this dyin’ stuff.” He paused. “But I realize it prob’ly don’t happen that way all the time.” He lifted Ennis’s hand and in the same gesture, kissed his fingers, the palm and then his ring. “I promise you, En, yer old and sick, I’ll do ev’rythin’ I can to keep you here at my side. I want you t’die in my arms.”


Sniff.

And Hal asking Ennis to tell him again the story of how he and Jack met.  That's just so beautiful and so touching.  Ennis was helping Hal, but he was also helping himself by re-telling the story. 

I didn't see this coming and that made it just even more moving and emotional:

Hal shook his head, the movement barely noticeable. “No,” he whispered, “but Ennis, do somethin’ for me?”

“Sure, Hal,” said Ennis, “what do you want?”

“Kiss me…” he whispered.

Ennis looked at Hal, slightly surprised at the request, but figured it was easy enough to do. He rose up slightly from the chair and leaned over the bed, kissing Hal lightly on the forehead. He went to sit back down and Hal opened his eyes again. “On the lips…” he said, his voice barely audible.

Ennis hesitated for a second at this request. He had never kissed a man other than Jack before. But as he looked at Hal’s blue eyes he realized that he wanted to kiss this man. He held Hal’s face between his hands and leaned in, pressing his lips against the older man’s, feeling them soft beneath his own, lingering for a minute. He pulled back but kept his face close, looking deep into Hal’s eyes. “Yer a good man, Ennis,” whispered Hal. “I know why Jack loves you.” His eyes closed and his head seemed to sink back into the pillow, as if the talking and kiss had completely exhausted him.

Ennis sat down and picked up Hal’s hand again. He looked at his face then looked out the window. The storm seemed to be ending, leaving as quickly as it came. He watched, seeing the rain move across the field, heading east.



Just amazing, Leslie.  Then Ennis telling Jack about the kiss - and Jack understanding so perfectly what had happened between Hal and Ennis.

“Remember the very first day we met—he asked you why you were so quiet, said he wanted to get t’know ya better. I think he was fallin’ for you right at that moment.”

Ennis was surprised. He didn’t know what to say. He had never quite thought of Hal in that way, but now that Jack said it, it all seemed very clear. “Is that okay, Jack? D’ya have a problem with it?”

Jack shook his head. “Of course not, En. Nothin’ came of it, and I think you gave some comfort and happiness to an old man in the last months of his life. Besides,” he added, “how can anyone not fall in love with you? Look at me.”

Ennis smiled as Jack said this. “Well, like I was sayin’—here for years I’ve been tellin’ myself I ain’t queer because there’s no other guy in the world for me except for you, and look what happens. I find out there is another guy—‘cept he’s old enough t’be my father.” They both laughed at this. “My point is, though, Jack—I get it now. I finally understand. I’m like you. I’m gay.”


Sigh.  What a profound and moving moment.

And I can't stop thinking about Hal and his friend with the brown eyes. 

Yes, hospice nurses are very special people - as are all nurses  :)!  I think I already mentioned that my dad died much the way Hal did - from congestive heart failure, at home, under hospice care.  I was fortunate to be by his side with my mom and I'll always be grateful for that. 

Some happy, bright spots, of course - how wonderful that Hal had so many friends that wished to visit him - that made me very happy. 

And, oh yeah - the smex was smoking!!!!   ;D

Thank you so much, Leslie!

Marie
The measure of a country's greatness is its ability to retain compassion in times of crisis         ~~~~~~~~~Thurgood Marshall

The worst loneliness is not to be comfortable with yourself.    ~~~~~~~~~ Mark Twain

Offline belbbmfan

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Re: A Love Born From Steel - Ongoing Discussion
« Reply #468 on: December 30, 2006, 06:22:16 am »
Marie,
what can i add to that?

I love reading your posts. You are so right, those moments you mentioned are very moving and emotional.

thank you for all your insightful comments! i love reading them  :)

and thank you leslie for this wonderful story  :-*
'We're supposed to guard the sheep, not eat 'em'

Offline MaineWriter

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Re: A Love Born From Steel - Ongoing Discussion
« Reply #469 on: December 30, 2006, 10:47:51 am »
Hi Marie,

I went back and re-read Chapter 15, after reading your quotes Marie, and got myself all worked up. LOL. I cried buckets when I wrote that chapter and I did it to myself again. Oh, poor Hal...but what a gift he gave to Ennis!

One of the things I did not like in some other fics that I read is that in many cases, Ennis realized he was gay by having sex with another man (not Jack). In writing this, I knew I had to have some sort of catalyst that would make Ennis understand he was attracted to men, but I didn't want it to be with him being unfaithful to Jack. And so we have Hal...

Leslie
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