Because there is not time to write a lengthy review for every book I read (oh, how I wish there were!), I’m going to share short lists of books I have enjoyed*.
When the body is sleeping, there is sift, shuttle, meter. Shift
treadle, metronome. Lift, settle, measure.
…The mind fights the
body and the body fights the land. It wants our bodies,
the landscape does, and everyone runs the risk of
being swallowed up. Can we love nature for what it
really is: predatory? We do not walk through a passive
What exactly is lost to us when words are wasted? Can it be that words comprise one of the few economies left on earth in which plentitude — surfeit, even — comes at no cost?
Our bodies worked until the heart was
audible, and frail. Love is what this
could have been if we’d opened its cage,
yellow wing and a scrap of song. Let’s
call it need and not deny the needy.
The lesson would have been that no one else will ever view our lives exactly as we do: someone else had looked at the snapshots and seen the two children but failed to hear the music, had failed even to know or care that he or she was lacking the emotional score.
Sometimes I liked the completed puzzle so much my father would spray it with a special adhesive and hang it up on my bedroom wall. I’d gaze at the picture admiringly for a few weeks or so, but after a while the glow of accomplishment faded, and the picture turned tawdry, dull, a fake. The point was never the picture after all. What I loved (I knew even then) was the process of rememberment. As if the picture were itself a dim memory, a collective loss, and through our grave attention we brought it to life again.
Astonished she remained seeing
and the live-dead world
and being in the
*A short disclaimer: these are listed in no particular order. Inclusion here does not mean the whole book was good (don’t assail me if you read something and it is not your cuppa). Rather, these are a glimpse into the books I’ve read in a week (or two) that I felt worth the time in some way. Not all books I read are included.