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Reading With Sea

A book club on your own time

Category Archives: Thinking spaces

What would you say to describe the value of a book?

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I have always loved everything about writing, sending and receiving actual letters.  From good paper, to hand made envelopes, to fountain pens to wax seals.  All of it.  I am also interested in the letter’s of other people, namely, authors and poets.  I have only a small collection of these types of books currently, but hope to continue to build them.  One of the books I have in my collection, which lives on my desk, is A Self-Portrait in Letters by Anne Sexton.  I have never been a fan of Anne Sexton’s poetry simply due to the way she writes, but her letters, are another story.

I love the frantic and rawness of her letters.  She has no direction, but the ones that her open seed bag of emotions allow her.  Her letters are loose and flowing and spontaneous and they leave drops of honey from every turn.  I wanted to share one with you.

[To Alfred Sexton]

“My Darling,

I miss you!  I adore you all over the page and all over the lonely house…. Your dear sweet face haunts the kitchen and in the bedroom I see the still made bed, and I know the quick void and loss of you […]
Kayo, I think I am beginning, and I do mean just beginning, to find myself – you realize that I MUST find my own self and be something or someone, not necessarily in any concrete manner, but in a personal manner – However, I am growing and I am doing it alone – perhaps you feel excluded in this but it can only happen alone… I feel the growth in one sharp way – I feel myself beginning to love you instead of just  need you.  I don’t think I have ever loved anyone in my life, not really – just needed them, wanted them to love me to possess me – to become such a part of someone that I could lose my frightened self… Now, I am learning – very slowly, with lots of backing and filling, but still learning… I find myself occasionally loving you not because I need you, or want your love, and feel in love – but rather an objective welling within my heart that comes from the sometimes whole person… whatever it is, I give it to you with no strings attached – You, my dear Kayo, I love.
In a way, it is like starting all over again – what we have had was good, but do you remember how I was always dissatisfied – I hope to reach the stage where I can stop begging for more and find myself giving regardless of what I get…
Do not resent my growth, darling, because it is bringing me closer to you in a more delicate way – closer because I want to be yours and not because you are my only refuge… In a way you will always be my only refuge – I am so half an orange without you –
Linda is a pixie – she had five friends romping in the playroom yesterday… “I had a fun time.  We played ghost and witch and we fighted and everything” – thus goes the child’s report on a three year old existence. – How fleeting it is – and how nievly (sp ha) special. […]
I am not depressed, except for the reality factor of no Kayo with a wispy wisp to love and tickle – […]
The doves are cooing in the pine tree and spring will come – will come – will come.
You will come home, too – and I can’t wait…
Kayo! your wife is proud of you – thank God for such as you in this world –
Last time you were in Chicago for the weekend I received a letter all about the undulating figures of the women and they slunk by your table – all the twos and twos while you were one … Put on blinders, Boots, I cannot bear to think of MY PETE waving stiff in the air for any other than me – I love Kayo and Boots and Peter –

-Anne

Do any of you still write letters?

-Sea

There is this blog I found today entitled, Across the Page, and I admit, I didn’t spend much time skimming around, but I did discover listed 25 reasons to read.   It got me thinking, what would be my reasons to read if I were to write them all out.  And what are your reasons to read?

Reasons I Read.

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1.  I read to widen my world, my mind, my knowledge, my experiences.  I do not believe that a person has to physically be involved in something to have an experience and so some of my experiences come from reading.  Most of these experiences, I will admit, are emotional experiences.  No one can truly understand… say, being in a plane crash by simply reading about it,but there are some emotional aspects about the situation that can become apart of the reader.

2. I read to expand my vocabulary.  I like to know words.  And reading helps me learn new ones.  It’s that simple.

3. The way we write is not always alined with the way we think.  I like to think of writing as a person’s “inner dialogue.”  This inner dialogue allows my understandings to be expanded in new ways.  I gleam new knowledge from reading that I couldn’t possibly get from any other medium.

4. I learn new things about myself when I read as there are bits and pieces of characters that I can connect to.  Even if that may not be by personality, I can often find the way they word something to pull something up inside myself as if to alert my senses.

5.  To be better prepared and to expand my trajectory.  I like to be well-versed and I like when my head is swimming the muck of numerous and even, at times, countless ideas and landscapes.  I like to have my senses dulled and then again sharpened.  I like to have my views well constructed and littered with good dialogue that hits at every angle.   I enjoy being able to enter into any conversation and reading only grants me this access.

6.  Reading for pleasure makes me a better reader and when I want to study, this skill comes in handy.

7.  I am an information-seeker.  Hands down, my curiosity does not still itself.  Even most of my dreams when I sleep are based on me finding and seeking out new information and ideas.

8. For connection.  If I read a lot, than I expand my bases and am able to have more ways in which I can connect with others.  I don’t want to forget to mention that being able to enter in more expansive conversation only gives me more space to connect with others.  Also, I love talking about the things I love with others who also love them.  These connections allow me to strengthen relationships as well as make new ones.

9.  Reading helps me calm down and quiet myself.  When I read it allows me to hear the authors voice and mind through the characters.  This skill helps me to replay this approach when in conversation with people and allows me to try to listen better and hear those inner workings and motivations perched inside the words of my family and friends.

10.  Reading is my escape.  When I am stressed or need inspiration, I find it deeply satisfying to enter another world for a while.  I enjoy reading.  I get pleasure from the act.  It refreshes me and it makes me intensely happy.

-Sea

Today is going to be a good reading day.  I can feel it in my bones.  Speaking of bones, I have updated the Book Raffle page. There are new books from various authors laying claim on places all over the world.  Please check them out, read them, become familiar, and make any suggestions of other books that you want added to the list & page.  I will leave the Book Raffle page with no poll for voting for a little while and let everyone read the descriptions and have some time to have books added.  In about a week or two I will add the poll to the page and open voting up for MAY reads.

Just as a reminder, here are the April winners.

I have been enjoying and loving adding quotes and books to my Moleskine reading journal.  Has anyone gone out and bought one of their own?  Of course, if you haven’t and are interested in owning one, the March giveaway is still anyone’s challenge to win.

I have tried the new Sharpie Pen out.  I heard the word on the street was that this new pen was suppose to be Moleskine safe and guess what?  It is!  I got one just last night (thank you Frank) and have already been enjoying using it in my reading journal and other Moleskines.

You all know that lately I have been increasingly concerned with my reading time.  What you don’t know is that these are my constant worries and thoughts and that I have merely been writing about them more openly.  Not being satisfied with the amount of time I have to read is an ongoing existing factor in my day-to-day life.  I have been trying out techniques that you all so graciously suggested and I will continue to work on them.  I still need a new desk for writing and some reading.  I still need to create a good reading space.  I have settled on a desk and will be making this one (hopefully, sometime in March):

I am still debating where to create a better reading space, but I wish I could have this space:

With the exception that my shelves would not be white, they would have to be a darker would stain.  The floors would not be tiled and so sterile looking, they need to be warmer, the chair would be slightly more luxurious, and the picturing hanging next to the fire place would be a Jacques-Louis David.  Either of the two following:

or…

I am a huge fan of Jacques-Louis David.

I am feeling terrific about this week and my reading goals.  Hopefully, if all goes as planned, by the end of March, I will feel victorious at surmounting at least some of my night stand pile, since it’s huge and only continues to grow.  Maybe I’ll feel this good:

I’ll leave you with some questions for you to answer:

1.  How has your reading gone this week, so far?
2.  What does your perfect reading space include?
3.  Who is reading what from the March selections?

-Sea

I have been searching for a desk.  Space is limited momentarily so I want something on the small/medium side of sizing.  After searching and searching and looking at everything on craigslist, I found an image of a desk that is unique and about the size that I am seeking.  I am thinking about making it, but I need a second opinion.  What do you think about this desk?

Or… this one: