Nov 17, 2011

These are some of my favorite things -- at the moment.

Try Louise Penny for characters you can't believe aren't walking through your own streets. What a combination, reading Louise Penny and watching Paul McCartney and Billy Joel on PBS. Thank God, I'm so far from being single-minded! "Let It Be" sung by the Master, played by the Piano Man. Heaven.

I just bought: 'Still Life: A Chief Inspector Gamache Novel (Three Pines Mysteries)' by Louise Penny. And all six of the next novels. They leave me breathless with wonder.

As we move closer to the finals of our semester of physics, being filled with wonder during NaNoWriMo is worth every moment of lost sleep. I love this writer and her characters and her plots which are woven like double -layered crocheted afghans. I almost feel as if I could turn the book over and read more of the same story from other points of view or find myself embroiled in one of the twists.

And then there's the occasion of the music in the background. Divine.

You should be so lucky!

Jan 16, 2011

Leaves across the road


I found this little poem, little string of thoughts, on the blog of my friend, Jo Lightfoot, the Everyday Poet. And instantly, I was reminded of an incident that I experience every year.

Nothing can halt its coming. No one can change the sadness it brings. Sadness that begins with a down-turned lip and prickly tears that are quickly blinked away. Time and repetition does not lessen its impact.

I live with leaves, with brown and black, with rosy, yellow, and white. Occasionally I am pleased to find a red one in the bunch, but they are quiet and sometimes hidden by their subtle coloring. All year long, I search among the leaves to find the secrets they possess. The golden essence of life and knowledge, of love and ambition. By early spring, I am recognizing the layers on layers of their beings.

      As I write, my characters are like leaves. Their colors and   shapes are waiting for me find the painting to which they belong. I suspect it’s going to be one I’ve loved for a lifetime, perhaps, something like Autumn Leaves by Georgia O’Keeffe. But my characters, like ordinary leaves, begin to take on individual personalities, and by midnight, I am typing as fast as I can, like running down hill and you can’t stop.
My daily leaves are my science students with all their disguises, fears, and desires. By this time each year, they are blooming, pulling out of the mass of fallen colors and beginning to march the halls with their own pace and style. They are the finest characters who ever tripped across a page of anything we’ve written.

Then it happens. Like throbbing colors of leaves fade from red and orange and yellow and rust to grey, my carefully trained students begin crumbling. They aren’t actually going to follow every rule, nor are they planning to go in the directions I aim them. Suddenly the day will come and my roomful of leaves, my handful of autumn, will rush through the door, carried by a strong gust of wind, and school will be out for summer. They’ll be gone and the building will fall silent and hollow. With my heart aching, I’ll let the covers of my laptop fall silently together. Being finished, even with a draft in need of more loving care, is a blessing.