Comfort for the Apocalypse, January 2022
Perhaps easier than Don Quixote for me would be "A Confederacy of Dunces"--I have been dragging that one around for 20 years! https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/310612.A_Confederacy_of_Dunces
Lovely writing Megan, I think this piece deserves a wider audience.
As always a lovely read - I think Pollen (who did his BA in creative writing) may have some copies of these important reads I should dust off. I especially love the photo of the redwing blackbird mixed in there. Every day I am hearing more and more birds returning and it reminds me that a) my time for reading those books on my list is waning, and b)that spring is returning!
I really enjoyed reading this piece, Megan. Great writing and interesting topic. I also chuckled and inwardly cringed thinking about the teenage self and books. I used to cart around my older sister's books thinking they made me more mature and hip. Vonnegut and Hesse. I'm so impressed that you read War and Peace in a month!! I'm curious what time of day you find best for reading more dense material. I've planned to read The Seven Pillars of Wisdom for about 30 years. You've inspired me to finish "second sock", so maybe that's next. But first, some Moroccan chick pea stew. That sounds perfect for today.
Another great piece Megan. Sharing your experience of early attempts to read "War and Peace" took me back to my first adventure with that epic. The difference being made under a cedar tree in Whiterock when an ocean breeze and the calming ever present lapp of the waves reset my 15 year old brain on absorb. Unfortunately the immersion into 1800s Russia was so deep, I neglected to pay attention to the sun's rays. To this day the mention or sight of anything Tolstoy calls to mind the sting of sunburned skin and smell of the vinegar Mom assured me would quell the pain simultaneous to my sighs as I turned the final page and lay back in awe of the work I had just read.
I am an avid reader to this day.
Thanks for the inspiration--I will dust off my copy of Don Quixote and see if I can get past page 25?
I love your description of your teenage attempts to read War and Peace. I had the same teenage attempts to read it, as well as Being and Nothingness. I remember actually laughing out loud at the library about how incomprehensible Being and Nothingness was, in spite of my pretentious teenage focus on being an intellectual.
I'm also working hard on reclaiming attention from social media and the internet, and trying to notice why I get sucked in when I do.
It's always a pleasure to read your writing, I really appreciate it.
As always, an enjoyable read over morning coffee, Megan. The Moroccan stew recipe is one that I make for work parties at The Commons, but I had a bit of Thai curry paste and coconut milk.