“You Can Only Live Once” by the Strokes: the springs of 7th and 8th grade
The rest of the album First Impressions of Earth by the Strokes: the winters of 9th and 10th grade
Supertramp and Abba: doing chores and making up dumb little dances with my sister in the old brick house in Manchester, NH.
How to Dismantle an Atomic Bomb by U2: my family’s trip to Riviera Maya, Mexico for spring break of 7th grade.
“Fall Creek Boys Choir” by James Blake and Bon Iver: goofing off with my Blacber in our dorm room last year.
21 by Adele and the Ladder by Andrew Belle: Homework late at night during my senior year of high school.
the National: many things, mainly the more depressing parts of the last few years.
the Goat Rodeo Sessions: Mapping out essays on white boards with Brian last year.
Our brains link noise to memories. For me, it has come to the point where most of the music I like is already claimed by a specific memory or feeling. “I’m sentimental if you know what I mean,” says Leonard Cohen in “Democracy,” but let’s not even go there.
X & Y by Coldplay: flying to Seattle for the first time.
The Silversun Pickups: turning any summer car ride into a joy ride through Western Michigan.
It used to be that I would just know what to listen to, but now, not always. I need to start listening to new music.
I began my first journal on December 30, 2001. It is spiral bound, but the spiral is covered by paper that joins the front and back covers of the journal, which has an old map of the world printed on it. The designers chopped a square out of the front cover, leaving a window to the first page, on which a sailboat is floating under the early morning moon. I remember loving this journal and having no clue what to write in it. The first entry:
Last summer I plowed through a good number of books. Now, I don’t remember what those books were, but believe you me, there were a lot of them. And that’s what counts, yeah?
This summer I wanted to do the same thing, but remember what they are this time. I started out with a focus on modern fiction because I’ll be taking some fiction courses at SPU next year. Also I want to write better, so I’m hoping that something will rub off on me!
The list so far:
Till We Have Faces by C. S. Lewis
The Art of Fielding by Chad Harbach
Slaughterhouse Five by Kurt Vonnegut
Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close by Jonathan Safran Foer
bird by bird by Anne Lamott
Grace (Eventually) by Anne Lamott- audio book
The Screwtape Letters by C. S. Lewis- FINALLY
The Poets Laureate Anthology
assorted poetry by Billy Collins and Tomas Tranströmer
assorted short stories by Flannery O’Connor, Ernest Hemingway, Breece D’J Pancake, &Steven Millhauser
and driving back and forth to work I’m listening to Gilead by Marilynne Robinson
Maybe I’ll post some specific thoughts on some of these, if I think I have anything valuable to say.
If you are reading this, who are your favorite poets and authors of short stories?