a home for a nomad

one of my favorite books

I’m frustrated today because I came across a reference to this book, and I was unable to find my copy of it. Natalie Goldberg’s Writing Down the Bones is one of my favorite writing books. It’s one of the few (no, I think it’s the only) writing books that I’ve bought more than one copy of. When I read her writing, I’m inspired. It makes me want to try again just when I’ve come close to giving up. She writes,

I write because I am alone and move through the world alone. No one will know what has passed through me… I write because there are stories that people have forgotten to tell, because I am a woman trying to stand up in my life… I write out of hurt and how to make hurt okay; how to make myself strong and come home, and it may be the only real home I’ll ever have.

She really speaks to me in these words. I have always felt like a nomad, endlessly traveling, without a place or a home I could call my own. I think, though, that my home is something that I carry within me. Maybe it is found only there where it cannot be destroyed, where it cannot be knocked down or devalued, devoured or pissed upon. Maybe it is a hidden gem within me, one of the few things that is mine and mine alone.

I take comfort in thinking that my home cannot be destroyed. When so much else of what I love I have lost, it is a relief to know that there is something important, something necessary that I can’t lose or gamble away. Whenever I need it, it is there waiting for me, fresh as an early morning rain, consistent as the ocean’s waves.

Reading Alice Walker’s Poetry Again

The World Will Follow Joy

I picked this book up from my library a couple of weeks ago, and I just opened it today. It’s inspiring in how it lifts the spirit and makes me feel like, simply because I am alive, I am part of something greater than myself. It made me want to pull out my old Miles Davis and Wynton Marsalis CDs and let the music soar around me like her voice does in these poems. She writes,

We will turn our madness into flowers […]

and I think to myself that the world needs more of these poems, that the world needs more love, always more love.

In these poems she writes of odd magic and of golden music, of a man who fixed not only the leak in her sink but also the leak in her spirit. It is a magical sort of person who can, without being able to physically touch the spirit, still somehow manage to fix it, as if applying a sort of spiritual salve to someone’s soul.

Right now, I am only halfway through this book, but I am certain that I will finish it today. I want to keep reading these poems that speak of people who’ve been loved, people who’ve been lost, people who, against all odds, form bonds that cross oceans and continents because, deep down, their spirits are cut of the same fabric.

I want to take this away from this book. I want to remember that my full heart and her full heart and their full hearts are all the same, that we all need clean water, air to breathe, love to wrap around us and laughter to lighten the burdens we bear.