borrowing bones

The occasional weblog of writer Dora Dueck

On P.D. James and Canada Reads

sc00116eaaNews of writer P.D. James’ death this week, at 94, sent me to her books in the “J” section of my shelves and then to an hour or so paging about in her memoir, Time to be in Earnest, re-reading bits, savouring details of her activities (the book is written as a diary August 1997 to August 1998 into which she also weaves her memories) and her reactions (the death of Princess Diana that first August, for example: “disbelief, as if….Death has power over lesser mortals but not this icon….The process of beatification was well under way by the end of the day…”). Savoring everything, in fact, because of her wonderfully intelligent, generous voice. I remember how very much I enjoyed reading this book some years ago, and the hours of pleasure with her other books as well. I’ve not read them all by any means, but a good number, including the memorable The Children of Men. And I’ve never forgotten the last paragraph of A Taste of Death: Read the rest of this entry »

On the Canadian writers’ blog tour

Sally Ito tagged me for a stop on the Canadian writers’ blog tour. More about the tour in a moment, but first about Sally. She’s  a Winnipeg writer of poetry (most recently Alert to Glory), memoir, and non-fiction, as well as teacher, translator, and artist (see her “tour” posts at Sally’s Visualandia). She often writes a haiku as her Facebook status, like this evocatively colorful one:

On the window sill
replacing ripe tomatoes
empty blue bottle

Now about the tour. Someone described the Canadian writers’ blog tour as a chain letter for writers–except that there’s no threat of misfortune should it be broken! I don’t know who started it or all the places it’s gone, though a google search uncovers some of its  pathways. Essentially one answers four questions, and then tags another writer or two for a further stop.

So, welcome to my place on the tour, and here goes: Read the rest of this entry »

You must take living seriously, he said

Just past the middle of our two-week Turkey tour, we had a day “at leisure” in Antalya, on the Mediterranean Sea. In the morning, H. and I wandered around Old Town, an area of charming narrow streets, ruins, cafes and shops which we entered via Hadrian’s Gate. We came upon a monument–to a Turkish poet. An odd-looking thing, a scroll of words tumbling downward, as I recall, and in relief, a face behind bars. (The photo I took of it seems to have disappeared, though here’s the one I took of the English inscription so I could look him up later.)  Read the rest of this entry »


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