Day 40 of the "What are you reading, and why?" project.
Susan is reading Real World by Natsuo Kirino (fiction) and Oneiromance by Kathleen Rooney (poetry), and she will tell you more about that at her own blog! This entry mentions cyborgs & cannibals, about which I know nothing! I think she also said she was reading Orange Crush (also poetry) by Simone Muench, and if it wasn't Susan, then somebody is reading Orange Crush and thinks it is "a beautiful, beautiful book." And we will watch for Susan's own book about Cyborgs (poetry!) to come out this summer from Mayapple Press.
And this brings me to Mike's nice comment about liking the blog because people who say anything about the books here have actually read them! This was in response to the previous entry about book clubs (Great Conversations), where sometimes people haven't actually read the book they have gathered to discuss! I want to make sure Mike and any of you know that often I am simply reporting what other people say about the books they are reading! I could not possibly read this many books in a week or a day!!
But I do read a lot, and read books simultaneously, as many of you do, an interesting thing to learn. I connect the simultaneous reading to our generally fragmented and interrupted lifestyles these days, and to the deep cyberspace click and go somewhere knowledge cloud of the Internet and how it is changing the ways we read, think, and gather information. I am alternately worried about what is happening to our thinking (sustained, contemplative thought and the making of certain kinds of logical connections perhaps going by the wayside) and very excited about us using more of our brain folds! We can think in different ways and make new kinds of connections! Maybe we can even recover some intuitive ways of thinking that we've lost!
I carry books around with me so I always have something to read, and this is part of my fragmented, simultaneous reading. Between volleyball matches at a tournment, I might be reading a poetry chapbook! Odd place to read poetry, but, on the other hand, the loud music, buzzers, and yelling of warmups makes me focus, and the poems also grab my intense focus. Reading in a peaceful place, like my own back yard, might encourage me to look around at the birds, clover, etc., remember an old boyfriend, and the next thing I know, I am writing my own poem!
I finished the book of Letters to a Young Fiction Writer, which had a wonderful thread at the end: a letter from Caroline Gordon to Flannery O'Connor about Wiseblood, a letter from O'Connor to another writer, and so on. I continue to read essay after essay in The Death of Adam by Marilynne Robinson with utter amazement. Now she has a deeply contemplative thought process and style, and I am learning so much from her. One of her complaints--uttered with both patience and subtle peeve--is that historians and literary critics will repeat blanket statements and dismissive cliches about books they have not even read--examples: The New England Primer and The McGuffey Readers--which ties right back in to Mike's comment and concern. Those who dismiss the books without reading them reveal their ignorance...but only to those who actually know something!