I have reached a reading impasse. I haven't been able to finish one book since last Thursday. I keep picking books up and putting them down. I want something good, to sink into and lose myself in, and nothing is grabbing me. I love my Jane Austen book, and I am reading the short stories in The Winds of Marble Arch, and am over half-way done The Morville Hours, and each of them I adore for different reasons. They are lovely and beautiful books. I want to read though something meaty, something where characters are wrestling with moral dilemmas, with deep drama and conflict, so that I don't feel I'm all alone in trying to sort my life out now. I think this is one of the ways that books - and literature - are so good for us, for we get to see other characters going through the same things, and see different outcomes. Different perspectives, too, and ideas.
So have you, Gentle Reader, ever turned to a book because it mirrored something you were going through? If you don't mind sharing, I'd love to know what the book was, or the author .
On the fabulous news front (and I'm sorry these have been in such short supply this year so far), I have begun writing again. I had been writing my poetry on and off over the past few years, but I had stopped story writing a couple of years ago. I've started up again, and I feel so much happier now. This has been a long time coming. It was reading a post on Mary Oliver that brought me to realize that I have to do what makes me happy. This was such a good interview on Mary, at Oprah.com, by Maria Shriver two years ago. I read those words, "We all have a hungry heart, and one of the things we hunger for is
happiness. So as much as I possibly could, I stayed where I was happy." and that was
writing poetry for her. I don't know why I never thought of it that way, doing what I liked because it makes me happy, and that is exactly how I feel when I'm writing. I like how she puts that a calling is something that you can't help but do. And that certainly is writing, and poetry, for me. I'm happier, and a happier person, when I'm writing. I've also been reading Twyla Tharp's The Creative Habit, which I saw at Chapters a couple of weeks ago and it reminded me I had my own copy at home, so as soon as I got home that evening, I went looking for it. She says what almost every writer or poet says: you must write every day, no matter what. That is the only way to learn and to become better. This applies to any skill, any creative activity you want to develop. Just do it, and keep doing it, because you love it. Isn't that a wonderful way to explore and deepen our connection to life?
What do you do because it makes you happy?