The transporting wonder
“Those of us who know the transporting wonder of a reading life know that…when we read, we are always inside, sheltered in that interior room, that clean, well-lighted, timeless place that is the written word.” – Alice McDermott
All of my life, reading has been a shelter for me, and never more so than in the past three years. In the roller-coaster sequence of events fraught with emotional highs and lows, I’ve depended on having that cozy, well-lighted, dependable world awaiting me.
Reading calms my soul when I’m too exited or agitated, and it comforts me when I’m lonely or sad. Through books, letters, and now blogs, I can play host to people long passed from this life, or visit with others whom I’ve never met except through published words. When a rainy day keeps me indoors and deprives me of the sunshine I crave, what might be a gloomy spell is instantly transformed into cozy contentment with a book and a cup of tea. When I’m tossing and turning in the frustration of insomnia, a book (especially a scholarly or devotional work such as the Bible) can lull me back to sleep, or at least provide company.
Whether you are battening down the hatches for another winter, or preparing for the heat of summer soon to come, I hope you will stay in touch with fictional friends and narrative neighbors who will be ready for you when you need them most. And may you draw wisdom, consolation and refreshment from holy scriptures, classic poems and other timeless works that have survived for centuries to remind us we are never alone.
Settle down for a nice chat with C. S. Lewis, or whisk away to enchanted worlds with Harry Potter and his friends. Make a friendly visit to a charming town such as Mitford, or travel backward or forward through time with any number of imaginative guides. Explore Ireland with Maeve Binchy, or go to India with Jhumpa Lahiri, or savor the warmth of Botswana with Alexander McCall Smith. The transporting wonder of a reading life is ours to enjoy! And it’s available free, or at very little cost — how fabulous is that? Where will you spend time today?