Thinking About Memoir
That is the title of the book I just finished reading, lent to me by my sister, who purchased it on a whim at the bookstore a couple of weeks ago.
I realized, as I started into the reading of this slim volume, that this writer was a frequent contributor to the Oprah magazine, and had written, sometime around January 2001 or 2002, I'm still not clear on the dates, one of the best articles about life I have ever read. I've even referenced it here on this blog, author unknown, unrealized, talking about this particular phrase, 'the longing for something...it's what makes us human'. That was Abigail Thomas, writer of this particular piece and author of this particular book.
I'm not going to go on and on about it; it's something that has to be experienced, digested, understood. Then, and only then, as a human being on this revolving door planet, will you be able to get through the book (in my case with numerous page pauses and closing the book on your thumb while you ponder what you have just read, and how brilliant this under-appreciated writer really is); but I leave you with this: the closing of the book, written, as far as I can tell, by all intents and purposes, by the publisher. It's a lovely little string of words, and I leave them for you now, as I get ready to go to bed and hopefully dream about a world where all these things exist. I quote the back chapter of the book:
A Note About the Series
Thinking About Memoir is the first volume in an ongoing series on the arts of living that AARP books will publish over the next few years. The series is intended to provoke thinking about some of the personal and public disciplines that have fallen into disuse in our recent history; such virtues as civility, conversation, listening, courage, loyalty, remembering, patience, and love.
I think for me, this pretty well sums it all up.