Guilty When Not Reading

I’ve been having a pleasant domestic time of late. Cooking brisket for Rosh Hashana–a two day production. Knitting two scarves. A bit of ephemeral embroidery. Watering and dead heading the garden. Admiring the roses (who knew that the miniature bushes at $1.99 from Trader Joe’s would become gorgeous white green blooms the size of big brussel sprouts).
But I feel guilty, because I was raised to read. And read. My mother–an early feminist and decided intellectual–wasn’t big on the domestic arts. I never learned to cook or sew at her knee. I learned that a woman’s place is on the couch, with an enormous Russian or French novel. No surprise that my mother and I are both English teachers.
But sometimes I don’t want to read–or even write. I’ve been writing short fiction again–more of a whim than my avocation. Dark worrisome tiny stories. One so controversial that an editor accepted it and then had to reject it–the tech staff refused to print it. I was both surprised and not. Writing, even reading, can be dangerous.
As summer turns deeper into autumn and the big sunflowers from Hopi loom under the portal and black crickets scurry into shade I want something that is neither rest nor adventure. That isn’t reading. But roasting or stitching.

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About Miriam Sagan

I'm blogging about poetry, land art, haiku, women artists, road trips, and Baba Yaga at Miriam's Well ( The well is ALWAYS looking to publish poetry on our themes, sudden fiction, and guest bloggers and musers.

2 thoughts on “Guilty When Not Reading

  1. I am so with you lately on this one, Miriam. Just built these cool painted walls in the garden and planted some rosemary and lavender. Need to get back to the computer, and am psyched that I got to read that controversial story of yours!! LOVE! And the power in that is getting the staff talking, arguing and reading it again! That’s the beauty in writing with depth and working in to those darker corners. Yeah, I say!

  2. I think it’s interesting to notice what I feel like doing or not doing, but (arrrrg) that guilt can certainly take all the fun out of it!

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