I have a day, today, where for the most part I will be out of the house, in a new and strange venue where my husband must work, and waiting for tonight, which is why I’m going in, in the first place. Music. Haven’t been to live music in a while and this is a happening. For me this is like a retreat.
Mostly I tag along a computer and some books. I have decided to take 2 today by Mary Ruefle. I discovered her through her poetry but today I have a thick one of her lectures, which synchronizes nicely with another short set (hers is a nice thick book) of lecture called “Six Memos for the Next Millennium” by Italo Calvino. I am at the almost end of this on-line class with Writers Village University ($99/year for all the classes you care to take), and it has taught me how to pick apart lectures – ones I wouldn’t read normally – and find the meat in them. This has been an amazing exercise in doing the work and seeing what comes up. Also in meeting some terrific writers in the class.
I would read Mary Ruefle no matter what. I love her writing. This book is “Madness, Rack and Honey.” I’ve had it for a while, since before the move, and not had time or inclination to read. But November and Art Every Day is coming, and I’ve started this new journal to put these posts in on one side and then illustrate a quote on the other, and I need some new fodder.
Here’s a review on Ruefle (yes, I’m recruiting for her because I stumbled across her and I may live in the back woods but I don’t know how many people know of her and her writing and want to get it out there):
No writer I know of comes close to even trying to articulate the weird magic of poetry as Ruefle does. She acknowledges and celebrates in the odd mystery and mysticism of the act—the fact that poetry must both guard and reveal, hint at and pull back… Also, and maybe most crucially, Ruefle’s work is never once stuffy or overdone: she writes this stuff with a level of seriousness-as-play that’s vital and welcome, that doesn’t make writing poetry sound anything but wild, strange, life-enlargening fun. –The Kenyon Review
If you’ve been reading, you know that I have been using Wylde Women Quotes from years back. I browsed through a lot of the first page of the 367 quotes I have and was not inspired. Time for new stuff. And I have tons of reading since I put those quotes together, so no dirth of material.
Today, I’m going to start with Mary and see what happens. I also have Brene Brown’s latest, “Braving the Wilderness” (which I’m halfway through and not as totally enchanted as I hoped to be. But there is definitely some juicy stuff there and I plan to do a marathon of her work, soon, and mine it), and a book I’m reading for another Writer’s Village, “A Lesson Before Dying” – I don’t like the protagonist at all. But I love the writing style – the repetition in it is almost like a chant. I want to emulate that and can’t wait until the class starts and see how it’s discussed (next week).
What would you take with you if you had such a day? I’m looking for inspiration – please share!