Monday, November 12, 2012

Annie Dillard

I pulled an old anthology off the shelf last night and saw this story by Annie Dillard and knew immediately it was exactly what I wanted/needed to read. She says her books are about "what it feels like to be alive." I remember loving her as a teenager, writing down quotes that inspired me. This is an excerpt from Teaching a Stone To Talk (1982), called Living Like Weasels:
Our look was as if two lovers, or deadly enemies, met unexpectedly on an overgrown path when each had been thinking of something else: a clearing blow to the gut. It was also a bright blow to the brain, or a sudden beating of brains, with all the charge and intimate grate of rubbed balloons. It emptied our lungs. It felled the forest, moved the fields, and drained the pond; the world dismantled and tumbled into that black hole of eyes. If you and I looked at each other that way, our skulls would split and drop to our shoulders. Bud we don't. We keep our skulls. So.


Could two live that way? Could two live under the wild rose, and explore by the pond, so that the smooth mind of each is as everywhere present to the other, and as received and as unchallenged, as falling snow?

We could, you know. We can live any way we want. People take vows of poverty, chastity, and obedience- even of silence- by choice. The thing is to stalk your calling in a certain skilled and supple way, to locate the most tender and live spot and plug into that pulse.


Sunday, November 4, 2012


(from one spring a while back.
one of my favorite quotes
from one of my favorite authors
of sad stories that feel unsettled
and anxious with miscommunication)

i like images that remind me
to enjoy life, to not take anything
too seriously & to be
independent in the way i choose
to experience the world.