Images without photographs

Stuff I saw this week:

~A man with only one leg shoving his sidewalk – he hopped between scooping shovels-full of snow: scoop-hop/scoop-hop.

~Two people wrapped in blankets running down NE Washington Avenue toward the bus stop – it was below 0. The blankets flew behind them like ragged superhero capes.

~A late model Buick, amid the traffic of shiny BMWs and Cadillacs, headed for the State Capitol with this sign posted in the rear window:
“In 1933 Hitler abolished unions”

I’m sharing in text because I was not able to snap pictures – but these images remain with me, perhaps a commentary on life in Madison, Wisconsin. I’m not sure what I think about all these images; I just know that they touched me in some way and I feel compelled to share them.

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my review of The Mockingbird Next Door: Life with Harper Lee

The Mockingbird Next Door: Life with Harper LeeThe Mockingbird Next Door: Life with Harper Lee by Marja Mills

My rating: 1 of 5 stars

I was interested in the book when it first came out late last summer. With the recent hubbub about the publication of Harper Lee’s rejected manuscript slated for publication this summer, I remembered Ms. Mills’ book – primarily because I now live in Madison WI where Ms. Mills grew up. Last week, I ordered her book from the library, anticipating a long wait. Surprisingly, it came swiftly – and had apparently never been read.

In an early chapter, Ms. Mills accuses Mayor Daly of exiting sentences he never entered. I was amused by this statement, and, as I continued reading, found it’s to be a self-describing mechanism for the author’s own writing – at the paragraph level. I also became increasing irritated with the non-movement in her story and having to parse the disjointed sentences and the appearances of non-referent characters.

Concerned that it was just me who found the book boring and simultaneously raising a profound dislike for Harper Lee, I went in search of reviews for the book.

The most helpful, and most vitriolic, came from the UK’s Telegraph. The Telegraph’s reviewer spoke what I was feeling.

To Kill A Mockingbird is a novel that speaks in language the soul hears. Americans of a certain age resonate with this book in the same way that we remember a dead parent. As a result, we tend to value anything about this book in the golden light of nostalgia. From that perspective, one can excuse the American reviewers’ praise for The Mockingbird Next Door.

Because the Telegraph’s review was not blinded by the historical heritage of Ms. Lee’s novel, the non-American reviewer brought into the conversation an actual critical review of Ms. Mills’ own writing and content.

View all my reviews

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Late again, eh, Cratchit??

When Bob Cratchit attempts to steal into work the morning after Christmas, Scrooge accosts him with this welcome:  “Late again, eh, Cratchit!”  Of course, Bob is late, having spent Christmas Day devouring the prize goose with his family.  Unbeknownst to Bob, Mr. Scrooge has had a Damascian moment and has chosen to announce it in a novel way.

I say this by way of attempting, yet again, to re-enter the world of blogging – not for you necessarily, but for me.

I have recently watched a healing process occur because someone took the time to write extensively about an experience that troubled him.  The process gave him a new perspective and an ability to see on the page, a representation of what had happened to him from the position of an observer.  Whenever we can observe ourselves (and I mean observe without judgment), a wealth of wisdom about a situation is possible, and healing begins.

Writing is powerful – reading is powerful.  Shared words – even with oneself –  are powerful medicine.

Ever casting about for a new way to re-encounter the Holy and Wholeness, I am a sheep in need of a pen (and I mean that in both ways).**

So, late, again, I return to the fold.  I am likely to do so again, and again.



** the Goddess wishes to point out the knitting imagery in this sentence.  Yes, she’s still with me.

Posted in Advice, Knitting, sing goddess!, spirituality, Uncategorized, Writing | Tagged , , , , , , , | 2 Comments