Monday, April 20, 2015

Currently Reading: "Don't Let Me Be Lonely"

This week I've been doing a lot of reading for upcoming neuroscience exams, which is enlightening reading but at the same time makes me wonder if I can really do this. I feel like I'm studying for med school as an English student, so you understand the necessity for me to delve into some much needed poetry as a way to uplift my mood, soul, and spirit. This week I am reading "Don't Let Me Be Lonely" by Claudia Rankine.

I hate to bring up the death concept again, but the excerpt from her prose poetry book I want to focus on is a bit on that level. Forgive me, but bear with me; it is still incredibly beautiful:

"Why are we alive? My sister had a daughter and a son. Is she dead? Is he dead? Yes, they're a dead. My sister's children and husband died in a car crash. She is a psychiatrist, but she cannot help herself. She does not, probably can not, legally, prescribe herself any drugs. Her world- she is letting it - is crumbling. 'Why...' 'What...'

"I listen, but do not speak. I look into her eyes. We sit on the floor of public places, our faces wet. Then, like that, I am in my car, turning the key in the ignition, my own quotidian affairs breaking in.
Who will she be when she is too tired to cry? Where does her kind of grief go?
Paul Celan whispers in my ear:

"All those sleep shapes, crystalline
that you assumed
in the language shadow,

to those
I lead my blood,

those image lines, them
I'm to harbour
in the slit- arteries
of my cognition-,

my grief, I can see
is deserting you. "

I hope this excerpt wasn't too heavy, as I got from it largely a message about the miracle of human recovery and how our minds and souls can revitalize themselves even after events that should have desecrated us.

We have some sort of innate power to heal ourselves and others, with enough patience and love. But that itself is also a bit sorrowful, since we do have to wonder where or grief goes when it leaves. Although I think it is just our brains and bodies protecting and guiding us, so that we can continue living and creating as we should.

Anyway, heavy stuff. Perhaps I'm reading this because it is raining outside. Who knows,
anyway, much love, and happy 4/20.


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