Saturday, November 6, 2010


I read (or try to) lots of children's books, particularly the YA (young adult) books. I am also a big Emily Dickinson fan, although I find her poetry quite challenging. (That's not at all a bad thing.) This summer I read a terrific book about her, Lives Like Loaded Guns: Emily Dickinson and Her Family's Feuds. This led me to a recent YA book about her, A Voice of Her Own: Becoming Emily Dickinson .

The YA book is quite quite good, taking on issues, subtly, of women's roles and rights in the 19th century, religion (Emily was not fond of the organized kind), and the path of the writer. This is an excerpt from the chapter entitled The Me of Me:

"One day when I was in the garden and thinking of a poem about a worm I was watching, it occurred to me that I was with my Self. It was a funny poem and nothing to show a brain in the head of the writer but as I thought about it, I and Me were one. That is the only way to say it. I was surprised to note how rarely I had been possessed of that feeling. One would consider it a birthright, but it is not, or perhaps it is and I was left in the dark. I cannot tell. But there I was among the daisies, my mind on words to capture one fat worm, its fright at being so rudely uncovered, its haste to the familiar, no-light dark of the underearth—not a moment to spare! I had come Home."

Home to herself. Imagine that. Steve Winwood wrote a song about it, Can't Find My Way Home, although that seemed to be more about drug/alcohol intake than personal or spiritual misplacement of self.

But, and this is an early report from this particular journey of mine, that "I and Me were one" is what I am looking for. I have absolutely felt it, in yoga more often than writing (at least recently). I guess I am not alone.


  1. "... although that seemed to be more about drug/alcohol intake than personal or spiritual misplacement of self."

    Isn't it both?

    (Although I like to think of it as a displacement of the self more than a misplacement, though I suppose over time the displacement could lead to a misplacement.)

  2. I don't think I have ever gotten quiet enough to feel this. Maybe some day.