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You Are Not Alone

Boy, do I have a treat for you today.  It comes via Kevin Kaiser’s site.  It’s a must-see, 20-minute film called “The Butterfly Circus,” directed by Joshua Weigel.  Such a powerful, sweet story!  It redeems the movie industry, in my mind, for just a little longer.  [When most movies now are made for Joe Schmoe Six-Pack, it makes you wonder where all the wonderful storytelling went.]

And the film ties into a little reading I was doing last night.  I started perusing Anne Morrow Lindbergh’s Gift from the Sea, and within a few pages, I was exclaiming in my head, This is me, this is me!  This is why I write!

Listen.

“I began these pages for myself, in order to think out my own particular pattern of living, my own individual balance of life, work and human relationships.  And since I think best with a pencil in my hand, I started naturally to write.  I had the feeling, when the thoughts first clarified on paper, that my experience was very different from other people’s.  (Are we all under this illusion?) My situation had, in certain ways, more freedom than that of most people, and in certain other ways, much less.

“Besides, I thought, not all women are searching for a new pattern of living, or want a contemplative corner of their own.  Many women are content with their lives as they are.  They manage amazingly well, far better than I, it seemed to me, looking at their lives from the outside.  With envy and admiration, I observed the porcelain perfection of their smoothly ticking days.  Perhaps they had no problems, or had found the answers long ago.  No, I decided, these discussions would have value and interest only for myself.

“But as I went on writing and simultaneously talking with other women, young and old, with different lives and experiences–those who supported themselves, those who wished careers, those who were hard-working housewives and mothers, and those with more ease–I found that my point of view was not unique.  In varying settings and under different forms, I discovered that many women, and men, too, were grappling with essentially the same questions as I, and were hungry to discuss and argue and hammer out possible answers.  Even those whose lives had appeared to be ticking imperturbably under their smiling clock-faces were often trying, like me, to evolve another rhythm with more creative pauses in it, more adjustment to their individual needs, and new and more alive relationships to themselves as well as others.

“And so gradually, these chapters, fed by conversations, arguments and revelations from men and women of all groups, became more than my individual story, until I decided in the end to give them back to the people who had shared and stimulated many of these thoughts.  Here, then, with my warm feelings of gratitude and companionship for those working along the same lines, I return my gift from the sea.”

So, you see, my writing is somehow giving back to you, with the hopes that you’ll be wanting to talk about the same things, or at least mull them over in your mind for a day.

Here’s that lovely film I was telling you about.  Oh, you have to carve out 20 minutes in your day to see it!  In two parts..

Part 1:

Part 2:

[Post image: The Butterfly Circus, short by Joshua Weigel]

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The quote I live by

Have patience with everything that remains unsolved in your heart. Try to love the questions themselves, like locked rooms and like books written in a foreign language. Do not now look for the answers. They cannot now be given to you because you could not live them. It is a question of experiencing everything. At present you need to live the question. Perhaps you will gradually, without even noticing it, find yourself experiencing the answer, some distant day.
--Rainer Maria Rilke in Letters to a Young Poet

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