From my very first post I wanted to pay homage to the speech which inspired the title of my blog, Ain't I a Woman? by Sojourner Truth. Such a beautiful speech, such a beautiful name, such a beautiful woman. It is one of my favorite pieces. I strive to emulate this style in my own work. Poetic and powerful. Honest and unafraid. Memorable. And I like brevity. It too is beautiful. This is the standard I wish to be held to as I explore the question with you ~ ain't I a writer?
"Obliged to you for hearing me, and I do have a few things more to say..."

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Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Not so divine secrets ...

     Dubya is on a book tour. Dumber than dirt Dubya! While I sit here fanning my overheated self with not particularly well written rejection letters.
     That little blow aside, I have been on a bit of a roll lately. Sent out two submissions this week, booked three readings, and most important of all, got more writing done than usual. I have also been pushing my finished children's books a little bit farther out of the nest.
     Now that it is the season of curling up fireside I find myself reading more than usual. I have been a big Anita Shreve fan for several years, so while in a book store the other day I impulsively grabbed what I think is her latest, A Change in Altitude. It didn't grab my attention in turn though. I abandoned it last night (I can be ruthless if the first few pages of a book don't seduce me). Which is exactly what the used book I caught sight of at my local grocery store did. I was supposed to be gathering dinner, but a bib of old books stood between me and food, and one title stood out. Last night I started The Divine secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood. I know it is an oldie, but I never read it and haven't seen the movie yet either. Ironically I note that it was published the year that my fourteen year old daughter was born, and it is my morphing relationship with her that caused my eye to drift to The Divine, which I understand to be a tale of a complicated mother/ daughter relationship. This is a sensitive spot for me now as I am currently being twisted into the wicked witch of the west although I am a mortal woman of the east. Anyway, I fell in love with this book from page one. Here is a mother/ daughter related passage from page 47. Tell me if you don't fall too.
     "My mother was a beautiful swimmer. Her stroke was the Australian crawl. Watching Mama swim was like watching a woman who knew how to waltz perfectly, only her partner was not a man, but creek water. Her kick was strong, her stroke fluid, and when she rolled her head side to side to breathe, you could barely see her mouth open. "There is no excuse for a messy swimmer, any more than there is for a messy eater," she told us. My mother judged people by how well they swam and whether they made her laugh or not."

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