something i think is beautiful
it dawned on me that by looking at my blog one might start to think that all i'm interested in is dancing, drinking, hanging out with friends, taking little trips and having my head in the clouds. hmmmm, okay not so far from the truth. just kidding. the truth is, i have a real passion that is very different from all the above. it is reading.
or should i say READING!
despite appearances, much of my life i've spent in complete solitude with my nose buried in a book. (above you see me bringing together two of my faves, i'm reading a book about cats. in a flannel nightie) this is obviously why i chose to go to grad school for literary studies, certainly not because i wanted to find a good job or make money or build a career. ha ha, no no no. i am sadly not a very ambitious person in the ways of the world. nope, i devoted all the time and energy it took simply because i love to read. and to think and talk about reading and books.
so i thought i would honor the joy and intensity reading has brought into my life by occassionally writing about authors or books that i love.
i am currently reading Lakota Woman by Mary Crow Dog which is a fascinating account of native american resistance in the 1970s. reading it is making me think of another native writer that i love: Leslie Marmon Silko. her books shape my world; she is one of my favorite writers and her novel Ceremony got into my skin and left me open to the sun. i have an extra copy if anyone wants it; i'll send it to you right away if you give me your address.
so today i looked through Storyteller by Leslie Marmon Silko. it is a different kind of book than her novels, and very beautiful. it is wide and soft and it looks like this:
i love it because it is full of the stories of her people and it crosses typical euro-american genre boundaries. words fly and leap across the page like animals in the southwestern land she knows and loves so well. poetry, short story, memoir, song, photograph together create a new kind of narrative landscape where all life is possible, time is a spiderweb, and all voices are heard.
the images upon these pages also sharpen my recent desire for the desert:
there she is, the one and only.
and my favorite of course.
this following poem once inspired darin to write a song of the same title.
i think it is incredibly haunting and gives me the kind of feeling i had when i first read Ceremony.
WHERE MOUNTAIN LION LAY WITH DEER
I climb the black rock mountain
stepping from day to day
I smell the wind for my ancestors
pale blue leaves
crushed wild mountain smell.
up the gray stone cliff
where I descended
a thousand years ago
Returning to faded black stone
where mountain lion lay down with deer.
It is better to stay up here
watching wind's reflection
in tall yellow flowers.
The old ones who remember me are gone
the old songs are all forgotten
and the story of my birth.
How I danced in the snow-frost moonlight
distant stars to the end of the Earth.
How I swam away
in freezing mountain water
narrow mossy canyon tumbling down
out of the mountain
out of the deep canyon stone
into the world.
who are your favorite authors you love dearly forever?
also don't forget to tell me if you want a copy of Ceremony!