I wish I could bottle this feeling of calm; a peaceful escape from the pattern. Shrink me down and let me lay against the curved walls like a genie in a lamp.Tears well in waiting: for it to be over, for the haze to spread and the melancholy to rise. Let me lay against the curved walls of this calm, I will not take up space but rather be taken up; nestled in silence and awe at the feeling of your blissful, untainted existence that flows through my core.
Her pages had been empty of late, left in a drawer under sharpened pencils. Dust was settling around ornaments of inspiration, clock ticking around her motivation. Excuses piled up, leaking on to the floor like dishwater.
It was not a reflection of her ability, but of her effort.
She rose on the East: glowing through the slits of clouds and shaping the world like a shattered Easter egg. She bowed to the moon and turned the light on in every room. Gently she whispered to the world its morning blessing. The world would wake once again and we would each be given another opportunity to live.
She wasn’t sure where to start: she wasn’t sure she’d ever finished. She met herself in the middle, turned herself around three times, cracked her fingers and sharpened her pencil. A new chapter would be her commencement.
She was then and always would be, continued.
She whistled to the world but it never echoed back.
The sounds of her surrounds fell silent, stealing her call.
She paused: checking for signals, sounds, vibrations.
The dust of hush allowed her just enough silence to hear herself.
She cupped her ears.
The thunder of her thoughts rolled deep into her belly.
She would never be alone, if she could hear herself think.
I wrote this under the strong influence of wine because my conscience kept telling me that nobody was going to read a piece about book club. Well maybe it’s not about who reads it, but more the fact that I needed to write it, because I’m a passionate advocate of reading and connection. People should read. Children especially should read. For fun or for education, reading is the gateway drug to knowledge on a euphoric plane of something outside of us. (No, I do not condone children taking drugs.) (insert eye roll here).
People should connect on any level that best suits them. These days its mostly behind a small screen at our finger tips but for some, those that aren’t tech savvy and still enjoy the feeling of paper between their palms and people face to face, it’s all about books and connecting on a physical level. It’s all about Book Club Baby!!!!
I implore you…
Read fiction, so you don’t have to be in your own head all the time. Allow yourself the opportunity to delve into something totally relatable and laughable, or unimaginable and mysterious. Sometimes, our busiest days, days of laundry, traffic lights and phone calls, are the days we need our fiction the most.
Read non-fiction: at the very least just to learn something. Read it for an opportunity to find or enhance your level of compassion and understanding, to walk a few pages in someone else’s shoes, to be warned or to laugh so uncontrollably at the mishaps and misunderstandings of others. To travel, learn a new culture or language.
Read a memoir and find yourself coming out the other end being able to better understand or help a friend, to ask more sensitive questions or to simply relate. Even the saddest stories can make you laugh with appreciation.
Read a self-help book, (not my fave) but hey, we could all do with a little self-help, a little self-love and a little “me” time every now-and-then.
FFS read a comedy!! Force yourself to laugh if it’s the last thing you do. And you can read any of the previously mentioned genres to do that.
Don’t rip the comic books away from your children, or the books about boogas and farts; they’re reading. Don’t scoff at your mates that read romance novels: being able to orgasm just by reading, (no pictures) I applaud both the reader and the author. Don’t walk past the top ten most recommended books because out of fear you are conforming, they all do the rounds and the chances are they are actually good. But in saying that, don’t forget to wander: wander through the aisles of book stores, libraries, news agencies, second hand stores or even a friends book shelf, there is some amazing stuff hidden behind those with big colours, shiny covers and fancy advertising. The best books I’ve ever read were by word of mouth.
But I’m here to talk about book club. Do it. Join it. Create it. Reading a book is one thing but being able to take something that is usually an individual experience and turn it into an event of connection, communication, learning and enjoyment…well…what’s better than that?
We live in a world that is connecting us so deeply with technology that we’re forgetting to connect physically. And you know what, that is ok. But when it comes to good conversation, I like to do it in person; when it comes to drinking wine, I prefer social over closet (most times); and when it comes to delicious snacks, I like it when someone else makes it.
When people think of book club they think of old ladies and for some unknown reason I’ve noticed, knitting. When I found myself in a situation where I knew no one and I had no friend of a friend to connect me to other humans, I joined a book club. Book club gave/gives me a short term, achievable goal in a realistic time frame. It gives me something to look forward to once a month. It allows me to drink wine, eat snacks and indulge in good quality conversation without my toddler tugging at my arm. I can be an adult and use my brain and my personality……I can be myself.
So I urge you,buy, rent, borrow, download, swap, exchange or even write a book. Read, listen or be told a story. And then take it to book club and talk about it. Use the easily attainable book club questions for that particular book to prompt your discussion and go for it. The flow will come naturally. The uneasiness of meeting new people or discussing something outside your daily routine of a nine to five office job or wiping your child’s ass and crying into your coffee cup, will disappear within seconds of someone asking ‘So, what did you think of the book?’
Her thoughts went dark: to a place that bared no window. There was no air to provide her food for thought: she was settled. Into a dust that had fought a storm, a dust that rested on a ground of lost adventures. She was done. She was defeated. Arms splayed for forsakenness, she had to remind herself of her needing: who would call her name as she turned to sand? Who would cup her into a vase and carry her across the desert to a cool salvation? Who would hold her, until her true end?
Only time could hold her.