Emily’s Quest

What is the Quest?

“Once, when Emily had been very small… she had started out to seek the rainbow’s end. Over long wet fields and hills she ran, hopeful, expectant. But as she ran the wonderful arch was faded–was dim–was gone. Emily was alone in an alien valley, not too sure in which direction lay home. For a moment her lips quivered, her eyes filled. Then she lifted her face and smiled gallantly at the empty sky.

‘There will be other rainbows,’ she said.

Emily was a chaser of rainbows.

…There was more of the rainbow-seeker in Teddy Kent, of the Tansy Patch. He, too, was going… He, too, knew–had known for years–the delight and allurement and despair and anguish of the rainbow quest.

‘Even if we never find it,’ he said to Emily, as they lingered in the New Moon garden under the violet sky of a long, wondrous, northern twilight, on the last evening before he went away, ‘there’s something in the search for it that’s better than even the finding would be.'”

– From ‘Emily’s Quest’ by L. M. Montgomery

When I was a little girl, my favourite book – or I should say series of books – were the ‘Emily’ series by L. M. Montgomery.  They were about a young girl called Emily Starr – a strong headed, intelligent young girl with thick, dark hair and a questioning mind who was, above all things, a writer.  She was, in every way, both who I was and who I wanted to be.  I felt like it was my story in every way.  Even the illustration of Emily on the cover of my copy of the book looked just like me.

The above quote, from the second book ‘Emily’s Quest’, sums up everything for me – who I am, my life, how I live it, how I see it.  I am here for the quest and I live it every single day – somedays more gracefully than others, but always with my whole heart, and an undying belief in the next rainbow.

My philosophy on the quest is summed up again in the words of another – this time one of my favourite German poets:

…I would like to beg you dear Sir, as well as I can, to have patience with everything unresolved in your heart and to try to love the questions themselves as if they were locked rooms or books written in a very foreign language.

Don’t search for the answers, which could not be given to you now, because you would not be able to live them. And the point is to live everything. Live the questions now.

Perhaps then, someday far in the future, you will gradually, without even noticing it, live your way into the answer.

Rainer Maria Rilke

(in ‘Letters to a Young Poet’)



  1. I love your site. Keep it up !

    Comment by knowledgetoday — March 30, 2009 @ 10:31 pm

    • Wow thanks so much! 🙂 Thanks for reading 🙂

      Comment by Emily — April 2, 2009 @ 7:51 pm

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