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Black Elk

Wasted my whole life getting comfortable

February 7th, 2008

An online magazine in the USA and now the BBC are encouraging readers to write 6 word stories or autobiographies.

The title of this post is an example of one of these, written by Richard Merrington for the BBC site.

This is such a perfect challenge for those interested in story-telling and the Bardic arts!

Here’s the backstory as the BBC explains it:

In the 1920s, Ernest Hemingway bet ten dollars that he could write a complete story in just six words. He wrote: “For Sale: baby shoes, never worn.”  He won the bet.  

You can see readers’ efforts at ‘Smith’, the magazine site, and others on the BBC site.

In the woods is perpetual youth

February 7th, 2008

EmersonOne of the inspirations of this blog is the Transcendentalism initiated by Emerson, Thoreau and others. Emerson’s essay ‘Nature’, although short, really started the whole movement, and stands as a good reminder to writers that they don’t have to produce reams to make a difference in the world. Here’s a section:

Crossing a bare common, in snow puddles, at twilight, under a clouded sky, without having in my thoughts any occurrence of special good fortune, I have enjoyed a perfect exhilaration. I am glad to the brink of fear. In the woods too, a man casts off his years, as the snake his slough, and at what period soever of life, is always a child. In the woods, is perpetual youth. Within these plantations of God, a decorum and sanctity reign, a perennial festival is dressed, and the guest sees not how he should tire of them in a thousand years.
In the woods, we return to reason and faith. There I feel that nothing can befall me in life, — no disgrace, no calamity, (leaving me my eyes,) which nature cannot repair. Standing on the bare ground, — my head bathed by the blithe air, and uplifted into infinite space, — all mean egotism vanishes. I become a transparent eye-ball; I am nothing; I see all; the currents of the Universal Being circulate through me; I am part or particle of God. …

Ralph Waldo Emerson, Nature, 1836