September 8, Monday evening -- Reading Neal Stephenson

In the Mission District

Reading Snow Crash, by Neal Stephenson. She's going to hear him talk tomorrow night in San Francisco.

She is a poet and a naturalist and just finished her MFA at Mills. Her poems are about, among other things, how fast the world is moving now and about how we've turned to cyber realities. People are disconnected, walking around with phones to their heads. Biology and poetry, she said, are fused, and that's where Science Fiction comes in. When she was twelve she wrote her first novel and it was Science Fiction.

She recommends Octavia Butler-- "Her books are killer."

She also recommends the poet, Joan Retallack.

Her own poems are often written by hand and form shapes. She was talking to her twelve-year-old nephew and asked him to read one of her poems and he laughed and didn't know how to begin. "How do you want to read it?" she asked him and he laughed and enjoyed reading the poem.

Her favorite book--Tao Te Ching, by Lao Tzu. She reads it all the time.

A movie that made an impact--American Beauty. It hit home, she said. People think they want material things, but they don't. It doesn't make them happy. Our culture is full of things that soothe us but aren't honest.

She likes bringing poems and music and books into groups of people. It could be anything, she said, like maybe Robinson Crusoe, and it will fill people with life and inspiration. Poetry, books and music, she said, reconnect us to the joy of the world.

What books have inspired you?


Anonymous said...

Your site has won a Blog of the Day Award (BOTDA)

Award Code

The award will go live on Tuesday September 9, 2008

Thank you,

Bill Austin

Ms. B. said...

I am so not surprised at your award. I love reading the blog!

As for inspiration: I often reread And Ladies of the Club for inspiration about getting through life.
A middle school book? Walk Two Moons, a wonderful story about getting through.

But, then, aren't so many books inspirational?

Loved the young lady's thoughts-- they were so good that I thought she'd be much older! I wish I'd been that smart at her age.

Marilynn said...

Hey, great job with the award! I think Walden & Siddhartha were my most inspirational reads. Finished them both in a day.

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