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Posts Tagged ‘literature’

I am currently reading Cutting for Stone, by Abraham Verghese.

 

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What am I doing to keep sane and calm during wedding planning craziness? Well, it’s not always easy, but here is what works for me. Keep close to your family and friends. Listen to their advice, their love will keep you stable.

I also read poetry and prose to keep me sane. This is always a good strategy, not just for rough times. Here is a passage I read today that calmed me down and reminded me to enjoy life as a precious gift. The passage is from Walden or Life in the Woods, by Henry David Thoreau.
“We must learn to reawaken and to keep ourselves awake, not by mechanical aids, but by an infinite expectation of the dawn, which does not forsake us in our soundest sleep.”
What a beautiful way to look at the world!

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Poet of the Month

Lately, I have not been able to finish a book. I have never had this problem before and I am not sure of the cause. So I have decided to give myself some challenges. I haven’t been able to read fiction or even nonfiction, but I don’t have a problem reading poetry. So I will have a new poet every month to read and study. This past month was T.S. Eliot.

Last month 12/09:
-“The Wasteland”, by T.S. Eliot

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Birthdays!

Today is the birthday of two of my favorite authors: Saul Bellow and Maurice Sendak. My favorite Bellow book is Henderson the Rain King. My favorite Sendak book is Where the Wild Things Are!

HendersontheRainKing

Henderson the Rain King

Where the Wild Things Are

Where the Wild Things Are

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Ok, so when I first saw this book I thought “Seriously? They have gone too far!” But then I picked it up and began to read it… and I was hooked! It seems like a bad combination but somehow it works. The original text is simply infused with zombie action. So if you liked the original, and don’t mind a dose of ridiculousness, then you will probably love this book. There is not as much “ultraviolent zombie mayhem” as I was led to believe, well at least not as much as most zombie movies, but there is a decent amount of “bone-crunching” zombie action.

Pride and Prejudice and Zombies

Pride and Prejudice and Zombies

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I do not know which to prefer,

The beauty of inflections

Or the beauty of innuendoes,

The blackbird whistling

Or just after.

-Wallace Stevens from “Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Blackbird”

Cherry Blossoms

Cherry Blossoms

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They were talking about John Cheever on the radio today (I think it was PRI). As I listened I was reminded of some of my favorite Cheever stories. He was mainly a short story writer with sort of a surrealist style. His most famous story is probably “The Enormous Radio”, a story about a couple whose radio lets them hear their neighbors conversations. He won the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction in 1979.

By far my favorite Cheever story is “The Swimmer”. The story begins on a light note as the main character, a man named Neddy, decides to get home by swimming through all of his neighbors pools. However, the story becomes progressively more dark as he journeys home. His neighbors begin to make cryptic remarks to him and the nice summer weather begins to get colder and colder. By the time he reaches his home he finds it abandoned as if a lifetime has passed. It really is a wonderful and moving story and I will highly recommend it.

You can read the full story of “The Swimmwe” online here: http://shortstoryclassics.50megs.com/cheeverswimmer.html.

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