Sunday, September 21, 2008

Carson McCullers

It's 9:18pm and I have to go to sleep soon. I have to get up at around 5:30am tomorrow. My boss is picking me up at 7am and we are headed to a meeting in San Antonio that starts at 9am. It's hard for me to go to bed so early. I'm not sleepy. I can hear the Dallas Cowboy game on in the living room down the hall. Every now and then I can hear Andrew let out a shout or a pained sound. He's been quiet for a little while now so I'm guessing the game is going okay. I've been in the bedroom lying on our bed reading The Heart is a Lonely Hunter by Carson McCullers. She is, hands down, my absolute favorite author. The plainness of her writing. Her innocent perception. She was downright uncanny. I find myself wondering about how she labored. What was her method? Did she hand-write? Use a typewriter? Afterall this was the 50s. I wonder if it was difficult for her to write such a wonderful masterpiece at such a young, young age. She was 23 when she wrote it. Reading her work makes my heart ache for all that I've never said, for all that I've never written. She makes me long to see. Plainly, clearly. Fully. The photo of her on the book's cover shows a sad, lonely, watery-eyed girl. Her face is long. Her cheeks are full but droopy. Her lips are pursed as if she about to whisper something. There are circles around her eyes. Her eyebrows are raised in an attentive way. It's impossible to tell whether she's looking directly at the camera or not. Her left eye has the smallest shift outward while her right seems centered. There's a dreaminess about her expression. She sits on a hill in field of flowers, but the photo is black and white and so it almost looks like weeds instead. She was a troubled girl, and a troubled woman, who committed suicide when she was in her 50s. So pained and lonely. So powerfully talented.

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