Saturday, December 12, 2009

Some thoughts on a winter day.....

My success as a writer has not been grand, but I do have a few die-hard fans scattered around the country. Once in awhile, I hear from a new fan whose curiosity about me spills over into an email. Fans ask me questions that take me outside my familiar routine, which in turn keeps the old brain cells active. Usually I have to ponder the answers for awhile before answering. For example, the new fan asked which of my five books is my favorite, and why. The answer to that one is threefold.

The Alley of Wishes is the book of my heart and a labor of love because I wrote it for my mother, who died long before it was published. My Name is Esther Clara is probably my best and most challenging book because I wrote it in first person, in my grandmother's voice. The Grass Dance was my first book and remains a fan favorite eight years after its release. However, it is not my favorite and I'd rewrite it if I could.

The second question asked by this new fan really sparked my imagination!! "If you could go back in time and visit any past era, when would it be?" Hmmmm......

At first I thought it would be wonderful to visit Israel during the time of Christ, to see him during his ministry on earth. But the politics and powers during Christ's time were as messy and discouraging as they are today so I eliminated that option. Next I thought about my lifelong fascination with ancient Egypt and seeing the building of the Sphinx and pyramids with my own eyes. But then I thought about the horrible conditions that surely must have existed then, with laborers driven like cattle to complete their tasks. I wanted to see something pristine, a time that, in my mind at least, would be less chaotic.

My answer to the fan was that I'd like to see my homeland -- America -- 500 to 1000 years ago before politics, before machines, before pollution. I want to see primeval forests east of the Mississippi River and the untouched grasslands of the plains as they were before the axe and plow changed their faces forever. I want to smell the air as it must have been back then, fresh with pure, rich, untainted oxygen. I want to see rivers and streams as they were before our modern actions muddied them -- so clear I can see the fish and fresh water clam beds in the depths. I want to see beaches along the Atlantic, Pacific, and Gulf, before hotels, condos, and sprawling estates lined them. And most of all, I'd like to see the native people in their original habitat, before European diseases, politics, and "eminent domain" wrecked their beautiful world.


AstonWest said...

Myself, it would have definitely been interesting to go back and visit during Christ's life...even with the politics and powers issues, seeing all of the miracles which we he performed would be astounding. It might be a bit tricky to converse with anyone, Aramaic is a bit rusty. :-)

Jaime Kubik said...

I know I read somewhere where you stated you born in the wrong era. I think this post proves it! My mother is much the same way. Though she has adapted well to technology and has an amazing mind which helps her exist in this age, I believe her soul is an old one that would have flourished in an older time. So fun to read your new post!

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I enjoy good writing by writers and poets who are not famous. My mother said I was born a hundred years too late. The older I get, the more I realize how right she was.

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