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September 30, 2017


Just back in the states (after 12-hour nap!) and came by to see how you are. I am sorry to hear about Susan Elbe; you made so very many friends-in-the-arts through qarrtsiluni that I am sure you have more to lose than most people, and that is hard. Sympathy to you. I shall read some of her poems in response.

I liked your last post on persistence. I've always been a bit of a mystery to myself in the realm of words--finding work in dreams or waking up with something in my head, moving by instinct and joy, having characters walk into my head fully formed, and often being quite fast, a thing that I did not realize was unusual for many years. It took me a long time to grasp that not everybody works the same way, and that the way a person works doesn't matter. Nothing about how ideas come or are shaped matters--or if it does, we can't know, not really--to the final made thing.

How some people come to persistence while others don't is a kind of mystery, too. I see it in the young people I know; mostly I see talent that lacks discipline. Will they find it? Or will they become something other than what they might have been, if they had found their shaping discipline and desire?

And happy birthday. I'm not sure if it was while I was away or is yet to come. Either way, happy September-baby wishes to you!

I'd never heard of Susan Elbe before. I went to the link to read her poem. It was just lovely.

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Who was Cassandra?

  • In the Iliad, she is described as the loveliest of the daughters of Priam (King of Troy), and gifted with prophecy. The god Apollo loved her, but she spurned him. As a punishment, he decreed that no one would ever believe her. So when she told her fellow Trojans that the Greeks were hiding inside the wooden horse...well, you know what happened.