The back and forth of life. The deep listening.

Monday, June 23, 2014

Today's early morning hours bring a note from the ineffable Paul Hankins, who had found a book I'd written long ago in a pile at the Goodwill. Who picked it up. Who read. Most writers would not count a remaindered Goodwill book as a happy event. But I do. I do. A quiet book, after so many years, finds its way out of the near trash into the hands of a distant friend. That seems to me far more sweet than any bestsellerdom might have been.

Today, morning, a note from a student soon returning from a Fulbright year. What it means to me to hear her stories. How lucky, knowing her, I have been.

Today, in the mail, notes from two bright young souls. Boys I've known forever now. Boys I'll soon be calling men. I've said this before. I'll say it again. I'll sit and listen any time to what this next generation says.

Today, late afternoon, a long conversation with a dear friend. Someone who knows me. Someone of whom I can say Tell me the truth, and she will. We're not perfect people. We have to, now and then, ask another to adjust the mirror so that we might look, again, at ourselves.

The back and forth. The deep listening. A fluid life. A day in summer.


Serena said...

It is fate to me that you are talking about deep listening today. My book club just read Another World Instead: The Early Poems of William Stafford who talks about deep listening and active listening in his poems. Fred Marchant, a former professor and now friend of mine, edited the collection and he skyped with us. We talked about the subtlety of his poems and the listening that is often thought of as passive, but how active it really is

Deborah Batterman said...

And something you posted a week ago gets my attention today . . . I'd say that's a kind of deep listening. Really lovely post, Beth.

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