Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Teaser Tuesdays

I love the ideas of "Teaser Tuesdays."  The directions are listed below and I must admit I took them directly from the site "Should Be Reading" which is linked throughout the directions.

So here I go....

"He said, lust is simple.  You reach an understanding at once."  p 186

The Collector by John Fowles
Back Bay Books, Little, Brown and Company
Copyright 1963, 1991

So, here’s the idea: Every Tuesday, check out the posts here at SHOULD BE READING for the “Teaser Tuesdays” weekly event! For this event, you do the following, based off a popular meme that has been floating around the blogging / book-group circles for quite some time…

Grab your current read

Let the book fall open to a random page

Share with us two (2) “teaser” sentences from that page, somewhere between lines 7 and 12.

So, here’s the idea: Every Tuesday, check out the posts here at SHOULD BE READING for the “Teaser Tuesdays” weekly event! For this event, you do the following, based off a popular meme that has been floating around the blogging / book-group circles for quite some time…You also need to share the title of the book that you’re getting your “teaser” from … that way people can have some great book recommendations if they like the teaser you’ve given!


*** Do NOT post anything that could spoil the plot of the book!!! ***

If your sentences that fall between lines 7 and 12 on the page you turn to give too much away, choose a different page, or a different spot on the page… we don’t want to ruin any surprises for anyone!

Every Tuesday, on the “TEASER TUESDAYS” posts, leave a link to your blog post where you’ve shared your “Teaser“. If you don’t have a blog, share the teaser in a comment on that week’s “Teaser” post.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Dante's Inferno

For the past several years I have taught excerpts from Dante's Inferno. By now it would seem logical that I would know this work inside and out; but, I have never read the entire piece. That makes me something of a fraud, I realize, but I guess that is one of the drawbacks of anthologies: We teach what someone else feels is important or significant. That is a post for another day.

As I read I realize that as with most classics, there are many ways to approach the Inferno - as poetry, as history, as religion, or as fantasy. Never one to dwell on poetic elements or devices in and of themselves, I read this as a historical approach to religion. (How is that for compromise!)

I do not remember much from my studies of European history so to examine the poem as a statement on the warring Florentine factions does not mean much to me. Rather, I was more impressed by the lasting influence Dante has had on religious interpretation and divine retribution! Dante had a frightening sense of "the punishment fits the crime." In the sixth circle of Hell Dante condemns the Heretics, those who spoke against God. Since they taught that there was no life after death they are comdemned to an eternal graveyard. As the war-makers wallowed in blood in their lives, they spend eternity in boiling blood (Circle Seven)

I read the Signet Classic edition of the Inferno translated by John Ciardi and the references come from that edition. I found this edition to be easy to read and while Ciardi made every effort to keep the poetry, his notes explained when it was necessary to stray.

I have no desire to read the Divine Comedy in its entirity at this time, but at least I am no longer an Inferno fraud. Reading this also satisfied a selection for the Casual Classic Challenge and I Wish I Had Read Challenge.

Life Takes a Turn

At the time of the last post I had no idea where life would take me. I was struggling with the decision to return to work or to retire. The thought of dressing up every morning and facing the world with an enthusiastic smile was daunting to say the least; so, I chose the retirement option.
For many days, even weeks, I was barely able to pull myself together to shower and dress. My only joy was found sitting in my cozy apartment with hubby, dogs, and BOOKS. The weather did not help my malaise. There was rarely a sunny day and when there was it was so cold I did not want to venture out from under my fleece throw.
Finally, I stumbled on news of the Savannah Book Festival and my spirits lifted. Hubby and I traveled to Savannah and met my cousin and her husband and we enjoyed a weekend of laughter and books. That was just what I needed. Savannah is a wonderful city and the book festival is beyond words. Vince Flynn was the keynote speaker and had he been the only author the trip would have been worth it. He was fantastic. He spoke of his books and his road to writing. It was inspirational and his patriotism phenominal.

While in Savannah the mid-Atlantic states where hit by a series of blizzards making our return questionable, so we traveled on to Jacksonville, FL to visit our daughter and her family. Occasionally we would text the temperature on bank signs to friends and family back home. Although shopkeepers would apologize for their 60 degree chill it was better than the 20 degrees at home.

Upon our eventual return home, I had made peace with my retirement and enjoyed the days of freedom to choose my activities. In May, we made a bold/crazy/exciting decision to pull up stakes and move to the beach. There are several family members in the Delaware shore communities so here we are blocks from the beach at Bethany.

Is there anything better than a chair on the beach with the water tickling your feet as you read a good book? Not that I can think of. I think now I have come full circle.   Now I am ready to resume my "Jottings on a Page."