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As Long as We Both Shall Live

An introduction to the special section on marriage.

Marriage is in trouble, yes, eroded by casual cohabitation, haunted by abortion, battered by divorce, redefined by rogue judges. And no, it isn't enough to say with a world-weary air that it has always been thus—there has never been a Golden Age of Marriage—for that's a partial truth, useful as a corrective to apocalyptic rhetoric but hardly adequate to the unprecedented realities of this time and place. Still, praise God, as Greg Brown growls in his "Marriage Chant," marriage muddles on: "Marriage is impossible, marriage is dull / Your dance card is empty, your plate is too full / It's something no sensible person would do / I wish I was married / I wish I was married, to you."

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