— Jim Harrison
|Cooder's evening position on the back of the couch while I work.|
The days are beautiful, but the mornings and evenings are sharp, acidic in their way. I have already seen leaves blowing around. I'm still back in February in my mind, the year and possibilities stretch before me. I still have time to get it together. Um. Not so much.
|Emmylou keeps an eye on me as well.|
As I mentioned, I finished Tom Bissell's book of essays, Magic Night. The final essay was about a writer I guess I am not supposed to like as he is a man's man writer. But I do like Jim Harrison. I can't remember offhand what I liked so much about Sundog (n.b., not a glowing review there), but it is a book I will buy as a gift.
A bon mot or two here:
Until that point in my life, I had heeded the inadvertent lessons of my English classes: literature was something written by the dead for the bored. ... I was fifteen years old and for the first time in my reading life I underlined a phrase not to retain its information but to acknowledge its mystery.
... I do not recall much of the night after the second bottle's splendid arrival, and by the end of the evening I felt as though I had been beaten up by our meal.
Sometimes politeness was just a way to escape what needed to be said.
— Tom Bissell
No matter how acute, the pain of hangovers can't rise above farce.
A creek is more powerful than despair.
— Jim Harrison
And this one is difficult to quote so I will paraphrase a bit, "Harrison's belief that a writer is someone who 'consciously or unconsciously takes a vow of obedience to awareness' ..."
And so it goes. I'm struggling. Not in an overt way, but I can feel myself all balled up inside, steeling myself, protecting myself, generating worry, and maybe some discontentment. On my walks, I try to remember to relax my shoulders, let out some of the tight energy, kind of ... um ... flow ... a bit. I try to escape myself by eating Smarties and Gummy Lifesavers and more than I should. I want to drink although I know I sleep better if I don't. Maybe I just need a good long bath or a massage.
E has returned from Europe and had to move back to Stonybrook for her senior year. M and J packed up the SUV and off they went this afternoon. They haven't returned. I worked on Monsterwood with Louise for a good long time and have quite a bit to rewrite tomorrow, but my head was too full to write this evening. So I tried watching the Keira Knightley version of Anna Karenina. Strange. Interesting, but I don't much like KK, so I couldn't get into it, notwithstanding that Tom Stoppard wrote the screenplay. I caught up on Borgen. And now to bed and maybe more Brothers K (closing in on the end, I swear it). I couldn't sleep last night so I just listened until I did fall asleep and I will try that again.
Breathe deeply. Sit up straight. Relax your shoulders. Good night.