The ordinary things that sing and comfort
The birds and my sandals
My morning walk expands my morning
Carrying a book and stopping
and sit on benches along the way
to read and maybe write a note or two
my feet and pages get along
like kindlings to start a fire.
My voice bounces in greetings
when I meet other walkers
their dogs running towards me
I walk and read and say hello
what other wonders do a day offers
to lift the spirits?
note: photo of the palm tree in front of the door of our condo.
I am reading 6 different books at the present time: Under the Volcano by Malcolm Lowry, The Inheritance of Loss by Kiran Desai,Tenth of December by George Saunders, Birth of a Dream Weaver by Ngugi Wa Thiong’o, Listening Below the Noise by Anne D. LeClaire,and The Portal of the Mystery of Hope by Charles Peguy.inder
I don’t know which one I will finish first.Under the Volcano is for my book club.The Portal is a theological poetry.
I walked 7700 steps today, the most I have done since my heart surgery. I still become very tired at the end of my walk. Patience I was told.
“Benedict considers reading such an important part of the meal, in fact,that he insists that the person doing the reading be a good reader, someone who would inspire rather than irritate the souls of the listeners. The reading was to be a artistic event, an instructive experience, a moment of meditation.”
-Sr. Joan Chittister, The Rule of Benedict
note:I’m reading 2 interesting books:Here I Am by Jonathan Safran Foer and Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo.
Photo:statue outside the city library,St.Helena, Napa Valley, California
The weather changed for me on Wednesday. I’m hot, cold, achy, tired,and have no appetite even for cold water.
I’m lying down on a sofa and resume reading Proust’s In Search of Lost Time.I finished Swann’s Way and half of Within a Budding Groove.I listened to the fictional Vinteuil sonata. “The moment when night is falling among the trees,when the arpeggios of the violin call down a cooling dew upon the earth.”
And I’m reading, Hemingway’s A Moveable Feast, again. I alternate reading them for variety.
Music is mixed with the reading. Mendelssohn’s violin concerto and Beethoven’s sonatas.
Think of deep problems
“whenever you open a window in the universe
you are likely to be surprised.”
Don’t you know
a river can flow both ways?
O, you are so creative.
“Thoughts worth thinking should not just be understood, they should be experienced.” – Count Harry Kessler, May 1896,
note: quoted in Reinhold Messner, My Life at the Limit
“Sometimes, you read a book and it fills you with this weird evangelical zeal, and you become convinced that the shattered world will never be put back together unless and until all living humans read the book.” ― John Green, The Fault in Our Stars
Rhythm of reading
certain passages aloud
alternating from a book
each of us is reading.
shared emotions imagined
unlike intimate conversations
devoid of gossip.
Evening, after dinner, together
reading, sharing passages
as if touring
new city on our own.
Sometimes, somewhere, each
of us is tempted to substitute
words, for words in the original
to suit color and meaning we seek.
Are we capable only of living
our cultivated way of living?
Are we reluctant to part away
from our “imaginative comprehension”?
The hardest step is the first
curious soul in our hands
not unlike children on the edge
of the pond playing with tadpoles.
“Reading is bound to silence…Constant and attentive reading done devoutly purifies our inner self.” by Peter of Celle, School of the Cloister
(photo: taken in Key West. The flower is called kalatuchi in the Philippines, popularly known as frangipani or plumeria)