Saturday, October 2, 2010


I just finished reading a few entries in Peter Terzian's blog on the Paris Review website, A Week in Culture: Peter Terzian, Writer, and am feeling...well, inadequate. The man is reading "Ulysses," for crying out loud. Not just reading it, he's parsing it; a little bit each morning. And he and his husband read poetry each morning at breakfast. That's after his daily dose of Joyce. Then he reads even more while commuting to his job.

I, on the other hand, am struggling with my self-appointed task of reading something—anything—of quality each day.

Of course, I must remember that I am writing (500 words a day, minimum); teaching (which includes quite a bit of reading); freelancing and dealing with the effects of whiplash. Oh, and then there's all this life to deal with.

Still. Come on. Can't I do just a little more, a little something to improve my mind, deepen my knowledge of classic literature, learn (finally) to appreciate poetry even if I don't fully understand it?

This is a beautiful day and I had a complicated dream that seems full of meaning—my father was in it (though I didn't see him, I knew he was there), Frank Conroy was in it and we had a joyous reunion that was way out of proportion relative to my actual interactions with that great writer/teacher, an old boyfriend or two, an acquaintance of mine who I wish was an actual close friend, and I lived (in this dream) in an odd little place with a front door I had to remove completely.

"Take down the barricade," I think is the meaning of that door. Or perhaps it is that, once I've opened the portal, it will take a large effort to close it again.

But haven't I already opened that door? And why was this dream populated by nothing but men (and me)?