Martians

I just finished listening to the Audible version of Ray Bradbury’s The Martian Chronicles. I remember how much it grabbed and moved me when reading it but this was a great version. Plus, I had the deep satisfaction of anticipating some of the moments I love.

Given that it was started in the later 1940’s… it still felt fresh today.

If you haven’t read it (or listened) – just DO it.

Martians

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NaPoWriMo 2019 – Day Nineteen

What a day and this is how it ended:

Coming home tonight
the yard already dim
and colors flown to night
an unexpected box
carefully set on the porch.
I gave a quiet thanks
to the postman who swung by
to leave the cardboard gift.
The label plain, gave no hint
so straight away, slicing tape,
then prying up the lid,
revealed a newly minted book.
Now I’ve no claim to need more books
But I drank in the aroma, deeply.

NaPoWriMo 2019 – Day Nineteen

TGIF, and for a new book

Molly better hope the book doesn’t fall over on her because it’s big. Really big. It came in a big box stuffed with a lot of crumpled up paper to keep it from moving around. The first handful of pages are double page spreads of paintings… It has a ribbon. It’s beautiful. It’s the US release of the show catalogue from the Melbourne AU exhibit:

Van Gogh and the Seasons

The Litany of Fear

I must not fear.

Fear is the mind-killer.

Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration.

I will face my fear.

I will permit it to pass over me and through me.

And when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path.

Where the fear has gone there will be nothing. Only I will remain.

— Dune, Frank Herbert

Good Mail Days

The past few days have been good mail days. I wish I’d done an unboxing video of the package that arrived today: Several turns of brown wrapping paper held securely with tough water-activated packing tape, securely taped corrugated cardboard, several more turns of a finer white wrapping paper, and voila, the book. Because of the tape, you couldn’t just rip it apart so it required a sharp implement and some care and much pleasure resulted before the book appeared in view.

It came accompanied by a 52/52 postcard. It’s hard to get into a weekly anticipation flow so I try hard to take them as they come. Thanks Evi!

The first book to arrive, Conversations With Artists, arrived similarly but in more modern wrappings, also requiring some diligence and care, just as securely wrapped but with less pleasurable materials (although all were marked recyclable!)

What to read? What to read?

Mom and I like to order from Dover Books now and again. Often she’ll want coloring books, bookmarks and such and I’ll look through the catalogue and fill in the order with things to give us free shipping or use of a coupon etc. It’s a happy joining of purposes.

This time I ordered two books I hadn’t spotted before and now, well friends I hardly know where to begin I am so enamored of both!

The first to jump into my cart was the book by John Pike on watercolor. My home palette is by John Pike and I knew he was a Woodstock NY painter. This is a reprint of the 1974 edition of his book, originally published in 1966. Here’s an illustration of the palette, still in production and still a favorite of many.

Fortunately, we needed a little more for this order and I found another book I’d not seen before, The Welsh Fairy Book by W. Jenkyn Thomas, a 2001 reprint of the original 1907 edition. There are a few familiar tales and one that revealed one of those happy coincidences – I’ve named a family in my NaNoWriMo story Gadarn which is just perfect for them.

Guess I’ll just have to read both at once!

Happy Birthday J.R.R – and Happy New Year to Us All!

Happy Birthday J.R.R.!

…the night-sky was still dim and pale. There, peeping among the cloud-wrack above a dark tor high up in the mountains, Sam saw a white star twinkle for a while. The beauty of it smote his heart, as he looked up out of the forsaken land, and hope returned to him. For like a shaft, clear and cold, the thought pierced him that in the end the Shadow was only a small and passing thing: there was light and high beauty for ever beyond its reach. His song in the Tower had been defiance rather than hope; for then he was thinking of himself. Now, for a moment, his own fate, and even his master’s, ceased to trouble him. He crawled back into the brambles and laid himself by Frodo’s side, and putting away all fear he cast himself into a deep untroubled sleep.

~~J.R.R. Tolkien, The Return of the King, Book II, The Land of Shadow.

Have you ever wondered what it would have been like to be a Tolkien kid and have the shaper of Middle Earth read you a bedtime story? This Brain Pickings Tolkien post has two separate recordings of JRR reading aloud!