Words I Needed Last Week 6/13
I saw a bee drown in honey, and I understood.
I just go back from a week plus in Oaxaca, back to a beach so remote the waves rumble with laughter at any ambitious attempt to open a laptop. I hope June, so far, has held you as you deserve to be held. As usual, lots has been on my mind, lots to share. Andddd I’m sitting my ass down this summer to wrap on some very special, personal projects. Back to the regularly scheduled program.
Here are words I saved, revisited, wrote down, and savored last week. From learning from bees and honey, to making voyages, to the act of writing being both a confession and a struggle to understand, to the unparalleled glory of a grand exit.
Happy Monday, friends.
Thank you for being here.
“The only thing I know is this: I am full of wounds and still standing on my feet.”
“Once, I saw a bee drown in honey, and I understood.”
“All my life one of my greatest desires has been to travel-to see and touch unknown countries, to swim in unknown seas, to circle the globe, observing new lands, seas, people, and ideas with insatiable appetite, to see everything for the first time and for the last time, casting a slow, prolonged glance, then to close my eyes and feel the riches deposit themselves inside me calmly or stormily according to their pleasure, until time passes them at last through its fine sieve, straining the quintessence out of all the joys and sorrows.”
―Nikos Kazantzakis, “Report to Grecco”
“Make voyages. Attempt them. There's nothing else.”
"I am sitting at my kitchen table waiting for my lover to arrive with lettuce and tomatoes and rum and sherry wine and a big floury loaf of bread in the fading sunlight. Coffee is percolating gently, and my mood is mellow. I have been very happy lately, just wallowing in it selfishly, knowing it will not last very long, which is all the more reason to enjoy it now."
"There are two elements that go to the composition of friendship, each so sovereign, that I can detect no superiority in either, no reason why either should be first named. One is Truth. A friend is a person with whom I may be sincere…The other element of friendship is tenderness. Can another be so blessed, and we so pure, that we can offer him tenderness? When a man becomes dear to me, I have touched the goal of fortune.
…it should never fall into something usual and settled, but should be alert and inventive, and add rhyme and reason to what was drudgery.”
—Ralph Waldo Emerson
“I’m a writer, and everything I write is both a confession and a struggle to understand things about myself and this world in which I live. This is what everyone’s work should be…whether you dance or paint or sing. It is a confession, a baring of your soul, your faults, those things you simply cannot or will not understand or accept. You stumble forward, confused, and you share. If you’re lucky, you learn something.”
The culture emphasizes this heteronormative thing that the most important relationship of a woman's life is going to be the dude that they’re going to fall in love with…from my experience as a brother, my sister’s longest most painful heartbreak was a Sula-like heartbreak, where the most important relationship of her life was a woman. Yet, she never had a place to acknowledge it or honor it until it was all over.
—Junot Díaz in conversation with Toni Morrison
“Life will break you. Nobody can protect you from that, and being alone won't either, for solitude will also break you with its yearning. You have to love. You have to feel. It is the reason you are here on earth. You have to risk your heart. You are here to be swallowed up. And when it happens that you are broken, or betrayed, or left, or hurt, or death brushes too near, let yourself sit by an apple tree and listen to the apples falling all around you in heaps, wasting their sweetness. Tell yourself that you tasted as many as you could.”
―Louise Erdrich, “The Painted Drum”