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Sunday, June 08, 2008

Inevitable Mystery

Reposted from the Live Journal Wicapis' Whispers

I'm reminded of a dear teacher I had in high school who refused to go on to the next poem in our antiquated textbook until we had all agreed on the same interpretive vision of each poem -- her vision.

Wearily we raised our hands. Yes, yes, that poet was just about to jump off a cliff. Onward!

If we can offer each other a cognizance of mystery through the poems we share, isn't that a greater gift?

Won't a sense of inevitable mystery underpinning our intricate lives serve us better than the notion that we will each be given a neat set of blanks to fill in -- always?

– an excerpt from Lights in the Windows by Naomi Shihab Nye


  1. I've read this before - did you post it in another context somewhere?

    One of my favourite things at school(which I expected neither to be doing in the first place nor to actually enjoy), is leading art sessions. I don't know the faintest thing about art and I love stumbling through the interpretation of a painting with the kids, listening to their ideas and igniting my own. I love how excited they get and how excited I get with them... I can't imagine wanting us all to have the same interpretation.

    I guess some people just like to feel safe in their own opinions; they just want to know they're right.

  2. No, I haven't posted this before but it wouldn't surprise me if you'd seen it. It's such a great piece, it's probably been quoted many times! But I only just came across it.

    Your art sessions sound like fun for all concerned!