It is a book on writing. But it is also more. Somebody said that somewhere. I think it may have been Deidra Riggs.
She is right. There are probably a few “mores” that Rumors of Water: Thoughts on Creativity & Writing is about. But one that compelled me with an odd urgency was this: trying to deal with coming-of-age.
The struggle to grow up, to find one’s place in a world that has both beauty and suffering, is something I deal with a lot at my house. On the one hand, my Eldest is always telling me, “I don’t want to grow up.” On the other hand, my Littlest is always asking me, “What’s it like to be a grown-up?”
So for my Eldest I am always trying to coax her into courage, and for my Youngest I am always trying to hold her back, if only a little.
My dual nature is best captured in a poem I ran the other day in Every Day Poems: The Stolen Child. (The excerpt of the poem, below, is also fittingly the epigraph for Rumors of Water.)
Now I put it out here for you. Can you see how the poem embodies a struggle to grow up? Can you see how a parent might play either role: the faeries or the oatmeal chest? The poem is also, in its way, about Imagination versus Reality. Interestingly, they share certain qualities, both inspiring and frightening.
How about you? What does The Stolen Child evoke? Something more?
The Stolen Child
Where dips the rocky highland
Of Sleuth Wood in the lake,
There lies a leafy island
Where flapping herons wake
The drowsy water-rats;
There we’ve hid our faery vats,
Full of berrys
And of reddest stolen cherries.
Come away, O human child!
To the waters and the wild
With a faery, hand in hand,
For the world’s more full of weeping than you can understand.
Read the rest of The Stolen Child
Post by L.L. Barkat. Visit L.L. at Seedlings in Stone, for more on writing, poetry, art and life.
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