Friday, August 07, 2009

balanced for flight

snippets from my summer reading...

"I know this much about racing in the rain. I know it is about balance. It is about anticipation and patience. I know all of the driving skills that are necessary for one to be successful in the rain. But racing in the rain is also about the
mind! It is about owning one's own body. About believing that one's car is merely an extension of one's body. About believing that the track is an extension of the car, and the rain is an extension of the track, and the sky is an extension of the rain. It is about believing that you are not you; you are everything. And everything is you." -- Enzo from The Art of Racing in the Rain

"It sometimes entered Mr. Pontellier's mind to wonder if his wife were not growing a little unbalanced mentally. He could see plainly that she was not herself. That is, he could not see that she was becoming herself and daily casting aside that fictitious self which we assume like a garment with which to appear before the world."

"There was with her a feeling of having descended in the social scale, with a corresponding sense of having risen in the spiritual. Every step which she took toward relieving herself from obligations added to her strength and expansion as an individual. She began to look with her own eyes; to see and to apprehend the deeper undercurrents of life. No longer was she content to "feed upon opinion" when her own soul had invited her." -- Kate Chopin's The Awakening

"In human life as in the rest of nature, change accumulates slowly and almost invisibly until it is made manifest in the sudden form of fledging out or thawing or leaf-fall." -- Transitions

To fledge means to bring up until able to fly. Where have you spread your wings this summer? Has balance escaped you? What is the invitation of your soul? Are you balanced for flight?

I look forward to hearing from you!

"essence" collage by lucy 7.10.09

16 comments:

Tess said...

The context of your question seems really strange to me. Why? Partly because of your phrase "summer reading". As if it's different from other reading. Then I wondered if maybe these were books you read while you were away on holiday.

It's interesting, because I like to think of myself as aware of the seasons, and your question "where have you spread your wings this summer" has possibly caught me out in a little bit of fantasy: maybe I'm not so season-conscious as I thought, because I can't differentiate between recent wing spreading and other times.

And I haven't the slightest idea what the current invitation of my soul is!!

I enjoyed reading your quotes. (I read The Awakening years ago and have some faint memory of these paragraphs.)

lucy said...

tess--very interesting observations. i definitely find a different rhythm to my days during the official summer months. perhaps it is the change of weather or maybe the "school" schedule that has dictated our summers so much with the addition of children and then a job in academia. i seem to recall, however, that britain may be more on the year-round schooling without a 3-month hiatus in the midst.

additionally, i do find myself reading differently in the summer months - more novels and less headsy stuff...things that carry me into fantasy world.

"caught me out in a little bit of fantasy" is a lovely line and one i hope you will ponder a bit more. maybe that's today's question for you...are you really season-conscious? it is curious how we view things...& help each other flesh them out, because i stopped to think about my term "summer reading"...yes, it is different from the rest. and summer for me often feels like my most full and alive time of year...the abundance of all springtime blossoming heating up and bursting in the sun. but then you know, i am FIRE!!!

xoxoxoox

lucy said...

tess--one more thing to clarify the question "are you really season-conscious?"...what i meant is more like 'do you fit your own image of season-conscious?'

MS said...

I've read Racing in the Rain and really liked it. My love of dogs probably had something to do with that. Haven't read the other two, but have run across The Awakening several times, so may read that one. I enjoy following your blog and find it interest and thought-provoking. Here's hoping your summer is a good one!

Christine Claire Reed said...

OH! Is this your first time through the Awakening?! :) I am always giddy when women read it the first time.

I always put it on "must read" lists when I'm teaching creative writing to adults who are feeling...fragile and brave.

And boy, have I spread my wings! I am pretty proud of myself for some exciting stuff that is coming up. Really proud, actually, because it's all stuff that scares the CRAP out of me! :)

Kel said...

WOW and yes, that is capital WOW
that qoute from The Awakening is fantastic
I have to read that book

we're in winter here
seasonally it seems more apt to spread one's wings before the fire, to dry out, warm up, etc
not much soaring really

and that's probably the balance point for me right now, can't soar all the time, have to come in for landing at some stage....might as well be in the cold hibernating months

Tess said...

Three months school hiatus?? And there was me thinking you Americans work hard! ;-) I think in the UK we have around six weeks' school holidays in the summer and two or three weeks at each of Easter and Christmas, but things may have changed.

It's this sort of question that makes me realise how blissfully ignorant being child-free can make one. We did have a few family holidays when my nephew was little, but apart from that and my own childhood, summer has never been a holiday season for me. Disliking the heat as I do, I've always worked through while my sun- and child-loving colleagues go off and fry on beaches somewhere.

And reflecting on it, I think that's the answer to the seasons question (yes, I realised you meant this was around fitting my own image) - I'm season-conscious except for summer, which I try my hardest to ignore! And I should invent the term "season-reverent" because that's what I mean.

Well it would be a boring world if we were all the same...

kigen said...

Lucy, your quotes are precious and deep!

For balance, the name, I AM WHO I AM — as taught to Moses — it is both our gateway to the Divine, and to our own divine nature — then we can fly.

tinkerbell the bipolar faery said...

My wings have been bound ~ painfully bound. I have spent this summer unbinding them, and then painfully reminding them how to fly. Balance ~ a thing I strive toward with each stroke of my wings.

The invitation of my soul is to learn, trust and know that the answers lie within me.

SUNRISE SISTER said...

Tess and Lucy,

I think Lucy's summer vacations are remembrances of summers past in childhood when indeed we were out of school from the end of May until after the first of September. Students now I believe are out maybe June 25, if there are no snow days to make up and this year they go back August 25 - which, alas, is only two months. All persons deserve more time off I think. Way too much work in this world - if we played more there might be fewer problems to face. Oh well, it's a nice dream isn't it? All of this is to say that I find spring summer a somewhat more carefree time and that may just be because in retirement (my second summer in it) I find ALL seasons more carefree.

This summer's wing span and spread have included practicing my Native American Flute, painting and reading more and taking up a new volunteer activity. Summer's been good to me:)

xoxoxo

lucy said...

ms--long time no see...i think "the awakening" is one of those classics that i finally decided i needed & wanted to read. you'll devour it in an afternoon i imagine.

CCR--you sound like the cat that swallowed the canary (although i guess that's more visual than sound-filled)...can't wait to hear what's got you going!!!

yes...my first time with 'the awakening' recommended by you :-)

kel--sounds like a perfect winter to me. i usually burrow in and spend lots of time with more contemplative texts and storing up energy for spring and summer...kind of like a bear in hibernation.

tess--i count three months since they get out in june and don't go back until september. for a mom, that equals three months!!

"season-reverent" huh? i have learned much from my winter-loving friends (you & christine, among others) and have become much more reverent. i didn't even notice this was a "long" winter according to many locals here. i was enjoying the gifts of darkness (in a very positive sense)...oh my, i've come a long way...but i still prefer lots of sunshine!!!

btw--no one has commented on my collage which captures my total sense of summer well-being :-)

kigen--Moses rocks...he also tapped that rock and missed the promised land which i still have a really hard time with, but God did give him some pretty cool words. thanks for the amazing reminder of all that I AM entails!!

tinkerbell--i have really missed your presence. i am so glad your wings are starting to spread back out...painfully is better than not at all, in my humble opinion. thanks for stopping by!!!

SS--perpetual summer vacation for the retired chick...ah, life is good and you deserve it. i can hear the flute floating across the mountains :-) xoxooxo

kigen said...

Lucy,
on the collage, what a wonderful, total command of that tiny meditating figure — no matter how overwhelming things around her might seem to be, she maintains her space peacefully, powerfully, beautifully.

tinkerbell the bipolar faery said...

I smile, upon reading my presence was missed.

lucy said...

kigen--thanks for noticing...

tink--right back at ya!!

Abbey of the Arts said...

lucy, I've missed spending time at your blog and it was a treat to savor these quotes this morning and all of the wise responses from your wonderful readers. The Awakening is speaking to me in all manner of ways, I think I read it in high school so maybe time to re-read? I am contemplating the "daily casting aside that fictitious self which we assume like a garment with which to appear before the world" and as you know trying to regain my balance after an unbalanced (but full of wonderful things) summer!

lucy said...

c--i love watching you regain your balance, just as i have loved watching you work your little heart out for the things you love!!! xoxox