Friday, June 15, 2012



When you are exasperated by interruptions, try to remember that their very
frequency may indicate the value of your life. Only people who are full
of help and strength are burdened by other persons' needs. The
interruptions which we chafe at are the credentials of our
indispensability. The greatest condemnation that anybody could incur -
and it is a danger to guard against - is to be so independent, so
unhelpful, that nobody ever interrupts us, and we are left comfortably alone.

from The Anglican Digest

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Fairy Tale

"Some day you will be old enough to start reading fairy tales again."
- CS Lewis, The World's Last Night: And Other Essays

Monday, June 11, 2012

Cold Sassy

"But to mourn, that's different. To mourn is to be eaten alive with homesickness for the person. That day, I mourned mostly for Granny who had lost more than any of us, but also for Grandpa, for Mama, and for myself.  I didn't want to visit Granny the the cemetery like Grandpa was doing. That was just her empty shell over there, whereas here I could touch things she had touched, look out on the flowering plants she had looked at, and walk through her house." ...

"One thing I got onto that morning, with the house full of Granny and empty of her at the same time, was the notion that she'd of hated dying so plain."

Olive Ann Burns, Cold Sassy Tree pg. 56-57

Sunday, June 10, 2012


“The melancholy river bears us on. When the moon comes through the trailing willow boughs, I see your face, I hear your voice and the bird singing as we pass the osier bed. What are you whispering? Sorrow, sorrow. Joy, joy. Woven together, like reeds in moonlight.”

Virginia Woolf 

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Ray Bradbury

Love what you do and do what you love. Don’t listen to anyone else who tells you not to do it. You do what you want, what you love. Imagination should be the center of your life.
We have our Arts so we won’t die of Truth.
UPDATE: Reader Dr. Karen Funt writes: “‘We have our Arts so we don’t die of the truth’ is really Nietzsche… [W]hether Bradbury realized that he was quoting Nietzsche, I don’t know, but it isn’t fair to Nietzsche to have the attribution of one of his greatest thoughts, given over to another, especially at that person’s death. I’m glad that Bradbury liked the idea, but that does not make it his.”
On reading as a prerequisite for democracy, from the same 2008 NEA interview:
If you know how to read, you have a complete education about life, then you know how to vote within a democracy. But if you don’t know how to read, you don’t know how to decide. That’s the great thing about our country — we’re a democracy of readers, and we should keep it that way.
On creativity and the myth of the muse, in Zen in the Art of Writing:
That’s the great secret of creativity. You treat ideas like cats: you make them follow you.
On creative purpose and perseverance in the face of rejection, in Snoopy’s Guide to the Writing Life:
[S]tarting when I was fifteen I began to send short stories to magazines like Esquire, and they, very promptly, sent them back two days before they got them! I have several walls in several rooms of my house covered with the snowstorm of rejections, but they didn’t realize what a strong person I was; I persevered and wrote a thousand more dreadful short stories, which were rejected in turn. Then, during the late forties, I actually began to sell short stories and accomplished some sort of deliverance from snowstorms in my fourth decade. But even today, my latest books of short stories contain at least seven stories that were rejected by every magazine in the United States and also in Sweden! So … take heart from this. The blizzard doesn’t last forever; it just seems so.
On signal and noise, in Zen in the Art of Writing:
Ours is a culture and a time immensely rich in trash as it is in treasures.
On curiosity and stimulating work, in his fantastic 2001 speech at The Sixth Annual Writer’s Symposium by the Sea:
I want your loves to be multiple. I don’t want you to be a snob about anything. Anything you love, you do it. It’s got to be with a great sense of fun. Writing is not a serious business. It’s a joy and a celebration. You should be having fun with it. Ignore the authors who say ‘Oh, my God, what word? Oh, Jesus Christ…,’ you know. Now, to hell with that. It’s not work. If it’s work, stop and do something else.
On joy in one’s work, in the same 2001 speech:
I’ve never worked a day in my life. I’ve never worked a day in my life. The joy of writing has propelled me from day to day and year to year. I want you to envy me, my joy. Get out of here tonight and say: ‘Am I being joyful?’ And if you’ve got a writer’s block, you can cure it this evening by stopping whatever you’re writing and doing something else. You picked the wrong subject.
On symbolism and self-consciousness, in a lovely 1963 project by a high school student asking famous writers to weigh in on symbolism:
I never consciously place symbolism in my writing. That would be a self-conscious exercise and self-consciousness is defeating to any creative act. Better to get the subconscious to do the work for you, and get out of the way. The best symbolism is always unsuspected and natural. During a lifetime, one saves up information which collects itself around centers in the mind; these automatically become symbols on a subliminal level and need only be summoned in the heat of writing.
On the beauty of life’s ephemeral nature, in his final piece in the New Yorker:
Even at [age eleven], I was beginning to perceive the endings of things, like this lovely paper light. I had already lost my grandfather, who went away for good when I was five. I remember him so well: the two of us on the lawn in front of the porch, with twenty relatives for an audience, and the paper balloon held between us for a final moment, filled with warm exhalations, ready to go.
On legacy, through a character in Fahrenheit 451:
Everyone must leave something behind when he dies, my grandfather said. A child or a book or a painting or a house or a wall built or a pair of shoes made. Or a garden planted. Something your hand touched some way so your soul has somewhere to go when you die, and when people look at that tree or that flower you planted, you’re there.
Found at Brainpickings 


“The soul becomes dyed with the color of its thoughts.”

Marcus Aurelis

Because Maya Said It

I love to see a young girl go out and grab the world by the lapels. Life’s a bitch. You’ve got to go out and kick ass. -Maya Angelou

Tuesday, June 5, 2012


“Sometimes I have the strangest feeling about you. Especially when you are near me as you are now. It feels as though I had a string tied here under my left rib where my heart is, tightly knotted to you in a similar fashion. And when you go, with all that distance between us, I am afraid that this cord will be snapped, and I shall bleed inwardly.”

Charlotte Brontë