Tag Archives: imagination

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 …

Continue reading

A pathological nostalgia

“I had a pathological nostalgia.  I grieved not only for my own rapidly receding childhood but also for the years, ‘the pasts,’ that I would never experience.  The past seemed as real to me as the present, as real as another country.  But unlike another country, its borders were closed…pictures felt like the next best …

Continue reading

Don’t lose sight

“I only hope that we don’t lose sight of one thing — that it was all started by a mouse.” — Walt Disney Walt Disney’s success is legendary, and the tough road he took to get there is well documented. He died in 1966, soon after his 65th birthday, an age that sounds far too …

Continue reading

Changing so fast

“Things are changing so fast that what we once called ‘science fiction’ we now call ‘current events.’ “ — Ashleigh Brilliant Ashleigh penned that thought in the late 60’s, before humans ever walked on the moon.  Yet now his words are more true than ever, which paradoxically demonstrates that the more things change, the more they stay the …

Continue reading

Little oases

“All that the historians give us are little oases in the desert of time, and we linger fondly in these, forgetting the vast tracks between one and another that were trodden by the weary generations of men.” — John Alfred Spender One of the most fascinating (and frustrating) aspects of visiting historic sites, especially ancient …

Continue reading

Reality, freed

“Trapped by reality, freed by imagination.” — Nicolas Manetta* Okay, the holidays are history now.  The winter has set in, and it has been pretty COLD lately for most of us.  Time for a quick getaway.  Come with me a lovely little spot on Captiva Island, Florida.  I’ll set the scene for you. Everyone is …

Continue reading

The genial flame

“Christmas is the season for kindling the fire of hospitality in the hall, the genial flame of charity in the heart. ”― Washington Irving Those who have been following this blog for over two years now will know that our family has so much for which to feel grateful this Christmas.  But there also have …

Continue reading

The greatest time machines

“Two of the greatest time machines ever invented are called memory and imagination.” — Ashleigh Brilliant It’s beginning to look as if this winter will mean a lot of time indoors for most of us.  So it’s a great chance for some time travel!  Pick up a historical novel (and feel free to share recommendations …

Continue reading

Dressed for Halloween

There’s a ghost who haunts my bedroom,A witch whose face is green,They used to be my familyTill they dressed for Halloween. — Sandra Liatsos Whether or not you plan to dress up for the holiday, I hope you’ll take the time to enjoy the cute and creative trick-or-treaters who may be showing up soon at …

Continue reading

Books break the shackles

“One glance at [a book] and you hear the voice of another person, perhaps someone dead for thousands of years. Across the millennia, the author is speaking, clearly and silently, inside your head, directly to you. Writing is perhaps the greatest of human inventions, binding together people, citizens of distant epochs, who never knew one …

Continue reading

Delicious

“Delicious autumn! My very soul is wedded to it, and if I were a bird I would fly about the earth seeking the successive autumns.” — George Eliot The scene pictured above is one of my favorite places in our neighborhood.  There is a pond just to the left, where you can’t see it in …

Continue reading

Defiance of the contemporary

“A hobby is a defiance of the contemporary. It is an assertion of those permanent values which the momentary eddies of social evolution have contravened or overlooked. If this is true, then we may also say that every hobbyist is inherently a radical, and that his tribe is inherently a minority.” – Aldo Leopold This …

Continue reading

The ordinary things

“If I seem to write to write most happily about the ordinary things that boys do who live in the country it is because this is the part of my childhood that I look back upon with the greatest affection.” — Christopher Milne Look closely at the name of the person who wrote today’s quote.  …

Continue reading

A moment just before

“Well,” said Pooh, “what I like best,” and then he had to stop and think. Because although Eating Honey was a very good thing to do, there was a moment just before you began to eat it which was better than when you were, but he didn’t know what it was called.” ― A.A. Milne …

Continue reading

Now that I am fifty

“When I was ten, I read fairy tales in secret and would have been ashamed if I had been found doing so. Now that I am fifty I read them openly. When I became a man I put away childish things, including the fear of childishness and the desire to be very grown up.” — …

Continue reading

Not yourself

When you look into a mirror it is not yourself you see, but a kind of apish error posed in fearful symmetry kool uoy nehW rorrim a otni ton si ti ˛ees uoy flesruoy dnik a tub rorre hsipa fo lufraef ni desop yrtemmys — John Updike WOW, I love this poem! What do you see …

Continue reading

Like a hand waving

“Time was passing like a hand waving from a train that I wanted to be on.” — Jonathan Safran Foer This has to be one of the most evocative analogies I’ve ever known.  It captures perfectly the wistful experience of watching years roll away, just far enough from us to be out of reach. It …

Continue reading

Out there, waiting

“They say no land remains to be discovered, no continent is left unexplored. But the whole world is out there, waiting, just waiting for me…” ― Lisa Ann Sandell There’s a popular saying about never being able to step into the same river twice, presumably because the river is ever-changing.  If so, we can never …

Continue reading

Imaginary walking

“One kind of walking which I do not recall seeing mentioned anywhere in the literature of the subject is imaginary walking.” ― Edwin V. Mitchell This post is for Bindu, who took me on an imaginary walk via her blog almost a year ago. A couple of  weeks ago when Matt and I had been …

Continue reading

Fresh and new and beautiful

“A child’s world is fresh and new and beautiful, full of wonder and excitement.  It is our misfortune that for most of us that clear-eyed vision, that true instinct for what is beautiful and awe-inspiring, is dimmed and even lost before we reach adulthood.” — Rachel Carson Grady wants us all to know that in …

Continue reading

Intelligence having fun

“Perhaps imagination is only intelligence having fun.” — George Scialabba Have you ever heard of rock balancing?  Neither had I until I saw this guy. One beautiful sunny day in San Francisco, he was practicing his hobby for all passers-by to enjoy free of charge (though some were leaving him tips).  I don’t know who …

Continue reading

The true magic carpet

“Imagination is the true magic carpet.” — Norman Vincent Peale Even when we aren’t free to travel because of health, finances or responsibilities, our minds are always free.  And now, with the entire world available literally at our fingertips, through words, photos, music and videos, our minds have even more fuel for our imaginary journeys. …

Continue reading

Language of the imagination

“ ‘They are all beasts of burden in a sense,’ Thoreau once remarked of animals, ‘made to carry some portion of our thoughts.’ Animals are the old language of the imagination; one of the ten thousand tragedies of their disappearance would be a silencing of this speech.” ― Rebecca Solnit I’m not sure I understand …

Continue reading

In the company of children

“Christmas Day in the company of children is one of the few occasions on which men become entirely alive.” ― Robert Lynd This quote sounds charming, but I couldn’t help but laugh a little to recall how exhausted Jeff and I used to be during the years when Santa would visit our sons.  It always …

Continue reading

An act of recollection

“The Polar Express was the easiest of my picture book manuscripts to write… Once I realized the train was going to the North Pole, finding the story seemed less like a creative effort than an act of recollection. I felt, like the story’s narrator, that I was remembering something, not making it up.” — Chris …

Continue reading