Not long ago I was doing a signing in a children’s bookshop. As I was sitting at the counter, I heard a nine-year-old boy and his mother talking.
"I don’t want that book," the boy said. "It’s a girl colour."
The mother pointed out the many attractions of the book; the sword-wielding warrior on…
Hiker Discovers Abandoned Town in the Great Smoky Mountains of Tennessee
From the Website of Jordan Liles:
“About a mile up an unnamed gravel road inside Great Smoky Mountains National Park is the back way into an abandoned neighborhood and hotel, some of which was originally constructed more than 100 years ago.”
In a film titled Tennessee Wonderland (click here for link), Liles explores the town and houses of this long forgotten but newly discovered ghost town.
— Ray Bradbury, The October Country (via quoted-books)
In case you haven’t picked up a copy and would like to read it on your kindle, my novel, The Silence of Trees, is FREE for kindle from Friday, September 26 until Tuesday, September 30:
Fall has officially begun! Happy Fall Equinox & blessings of the final harvest as we prepare for winter. Happy Mabon!
Sharing a poem by Edward Hirsch for the Autumnal Equinox:
Edward Hirsch, 1950
Fall, falling, fallen. That’s the way the season
Changes its tense in the long-haired maples
That dot the road; the veiny hand-shaped leaves
Redden on their branches (in a fiery competition
With the final remaining cardinals) and then
Begin to sidle and float through the air, at last
Settling into colorful layers carpeting the ground.
At twilight the light, too, is layered in the trees
In a season of odd, dusky congruences—a scarlet tanager
And the odor of burning leaves, a golden retriever
Loping down the center of a wide street and the sun
Setting behind smoke-filled trees in the distance,
A gap opening up in the treetops and a bruised cloud
Blamelessly filling the space with purples. Everything
Changes and moves in the split second between summer’s
Sprawling past and winter’s hard revision, one moment
Pulling out of the station according to schedule,
Another moment arriving on the next platform. It
Happens almost like clockwork: the leaves drift away
From their branches and gather slowly at our feet,
Sliding over our ankles, and the season begins moving
Around us even as its colorful weather moves us,
Even as it pulls us into its dusty, twilit pockets.
And every year there is a brief, startling moment
When we pause in the middle of a long walk home and
Suddenly feel something invisible and weightless
Touching our shoulders, sweeping down from the air:
It is the autumn wind pressing against our bodies;
It is the changing light of fall falling on us.
“But, Lena, that’s sad.”
“No, if the sunset stayed and we got bored, that would be a real sadness."
— Ray Bradbury, Dandelion Wine
I had this sudden awareness, she continues, of how the moments of our lives go out of existence before we’re conscious of having lived them. It’s only a relatively few moments that we get to keep and carry with us for the rest of our lives. Those moments are our lives. Or maybe it’s more like those moments are the dots in what we call our lives, or the lines we draw between them, connecting them into imaginary pictures of ourselves.
You know, like those mythical pictures of constellations traced between stars. I remember how when I was a kid, I actually expected to be able to look up and see Pagasus spread out against the night. And when I couldn’t, it seemed like a trick had been played on me, like a fraud. I thought, hey, if this is all there is to it, then I could reconnect the stars in any shape I wanted. I could create the Ken and Barbie constellations…
I realize we can never predict when those few special moments will occur, she says. How… there are certain people, not that many, who enter one’s life with the power to make those moments happen. Maybe that’s what falling in love means…the power to create for each other the moments by which we define ourselves."
— Stuart Dybek, Paper Lantern
“Big-shot town, small-shot town, jet-propelled old-fashioned town, by old-world hands with new-world tools built into a place whose heartbeat carries farther than its shout, whose whispering in the night sounds less hollow than its roistering noontime laugh: they have builded a heavy-shouldered laughter here who went to work too young.”
~ Nelson Algren, Chicago: City on the Make
You’ve probably heard that the Ukrainian flag was planted on a Moscow skyscraper last week, and that the building’s spire was spray-painted the Ukrainian national colors of blue and yellow. On Thursday, four Russian citizens were accused of committing the act and were put under house arrest. Since their arrest, Ukrainian extreme sportsman Mustang Wanted has taken responsibility on his popular Facebook page, posting a photo of himself allegedly atop the building. Those arrested by Russian authorities deny wrongdoing, and say they were parachuting off the skyscraper coincidentally around the same time the flag was planted. Though the story has yet to be straightened out, it brings to light activist movements within Russia that have come out in opposition to Putin and in support of Ukraine’s pro-democratic movement. This movement, led by a young, educated, and politically active population of Russians has taken a stance against a corrupt and authoritative governance.
“So what is wild? What is wilderness? What are dreams but an internal wilderness and what is desire but a wildness of the soul?”~Louise Erdrich, The Blue Jay’s Dance: A Birth Year
(Photo by Valya Lupescu, Oasis 2014)
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