Tuesday, October 7, 2008

The Story of Edgar Sawtelle: an update

I am in the middle of the book and still enjoying it tremendously. Here are a couple of passages that spoke to me.

This first one describes grief:

Just when normal life felt almost possible--when the world held some kind of order, meaning, even loveliness...some small thing would go awry and the veil of optimism was torn away, the barren world revealed. They learned, somehow, to wait those times out. There was no cure, no answer, no reparation.

This next one is, believe it or not, about dog-breeding; it is part of a letter from a self-proclaimed "factory-man"--one who seeks to create what is reliable--to a fellow dog-breeder whom he calls an "artist":

The artist does not know what he wants, but looks for good paints, good brushes, and good canvas. He trusts that talent will produce a desirable result. Sadly, for most people, it does not....No one can say if you are that person, who given good paints, good brushes and a fine canvas, can produce something better than a factory man...for a simple factory man like me, an effort must be abandoned once its hopelessness is exposed. Only the artist perseveres in such circumstance.

This is the reason I read: to connect and to understand, and to have my experiences explained much more elegantly than I can and to find that I am not alone in my pursuits, my take of the world, my conclusions about what I must do.

If you haven't read this book, I highly recommend it.

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