Leave-taking Ceremony

Gently they go, the beautiful, the tender, the kind;
Quietly they go, the intelligent, the witty, the brave.

Edna St. Vincent Millay, from Dirge Without Music

I’ve misappropriated St. Vincent Millay’s words here. I hope she wouldn’t mind.

Before heading to London I witnessed the Leave-taking Ceremony, a tradition throughout Hungary.  Seniors – before taking their final exams – walk through the halls between rows of their underclassmates, who had decorated the school earlier in the afternoon. Because the gymnasium couldn’t accommodate all who wanted to view the ceremony, a projection of the event was shown is the main foyer.  Many parents and friends had to wait outside the school because of the crowd indoors.

Benedictus (Karl Jenkins)


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