Keep on keeping on

"so much that's worthy occurs by accident"

I did a 21-day meditation thing with Alicia Keys and Deepak Chopra. It was good guidance for me, as my meditation practice slips and needs reinforcements now and then. I’m not feeling so good lately — in body and soul, to tell you the truth. I’m not going to muse and mull over reasons like I might have in the past. They are actually quite obvious and go beyond the pandamnic. My own navel-gazing doesn’t much interest me. My good friend said yesterday, You should write about it. We are fully bodies, aren’t we, and I am a body hunted by a hunter hare-brained with a stupid gun and deadly aim.

I marvel at the faithful.

I fantasize nearly every day these days about a reading retreat. The things I want are to be alone with woods nearby, rain, a pile of New Yorkers, a book or two. I’d like three nights. I don’t want this recreated at home. I don’t know if this is possible. Send me a box of rain.

Reader, what are you reading? I am working on a re-read of Jane Eyre and then Wide Sargosso Sea, preparing for a scholarly class in late July. Doesn’t that sound deeply satisfying? I’m considering a class on capitalism — on unhooking from it. The class is led by two women, one of whom, Jen Lemen, has taught me so much over the last year that I can’t even write about it, yet. I have finished a sometimes laugh out loud, fairly light but beautifully written novel called Early Morning Riser by Katherine Heiny. I’m also re-reading with my various students: The Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls, The Things They Carried by Tim O’Brien and some magical realism. I was struck by this poem by Stephen Dunn the other day. It’s called “The Contrarian’s Advice to Himself” and it was published in the online magazine “Rattle.” Here’s the link. I love that last bit:

And if you believe that genetics

has given you one face

but your job is to create

for yourself another, try not to worry

when you fail. So much that’s worthy

occurs by accident. The Bible

couldn’t have been written by people

who thought they were writing the Bible.

I’ve said it before, but reading is my only constant.

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