Parisian Literary Salon

creating community through reading and discussing literature

June & July London Salons

Filed under: Upcoming Events — toby at 12:15 pm on Thursday, June 23, 2011

June 20, 2011

1. Petit Salons June & July: Poetry and Short Stories

2. Other Salon events and community news

3. Musings and a poem

1. Petit Salons: A dash of poetry, a gorgeous story

June & July Short Offers
Thursday June 30th: Walt Whitman selection
Thursday July 7th: Emily Dickinson selection
Tuesday July 12th: “Sonny’s Blues” by James Baldwin

Afternoon (1-3 PM) and evening (8-10) sessions proposed for each date….cost per study is 15 pounds. You may do one or all of the offerings—once you have registered (please state afternoon or evening preference or flexible), I will send along opening notes and copies of the poems or work to be studied. Dive in! The reading in preparation is very manageable- but I do need to know if there are minimum of five participants at least five days before the study. Email me to register…

Yes, it is the midsummer madness but for those not currently studying Dante’s Paradisio in the Salon, a dip into an inspiring poet or a riveting short story might be the perfect word-filled respite. These short Salons are a wonderful opportunity for those who have wanted to try a Salon or are short on time so find it difficult to commit to the longer studies. Even in the Petite Salons, we discover a fresh perspective through the group immersion in a complex read. In reflection of the shrugs and awful rhythms of the world around us, I celebrate the Salon conversations for the space they offer to celebrate the beauty of living: from the words on the page to the resonances in our lives.

2. Other Salon news and events

· The Young Writers Workshop met for the final time on Sunday and I was impressed and motivated by the rich work produced…and the interesting conversations about the role of the writer and the purpose of a story. Think we will continue our work in September….

· THANKS to all who participated in the Doodle poll for the Salon September offerings—LJ did the work of researching theatrical offerings and so Measure for Measure will also be offered in September to prepare for a viewing of the RSC production in November. If you have not voted in the poll:

· Salon friend Ben (who is always up to SOMETHING!) has some lively events coming up—Simon Armitage TONIGHT on poetry and illustration:

· then Tea Revives the World : “a site-specific performance experiment, in four parts, inspired in part by the piers of Greenwich and The Cutty Sark, the tea-clipper ship that traded tea all over the globe. Set against the riverside and the shifting Thames shoreline, the performance involves movement, sculptural costume and water. “ :

3. Musings and a poem

There are those moments in your life when you feel as though you are free-falling, and each morning you wake up and need to piece yourself back together again…when life does not go according to plan (whose plan? Why did I think I could plan?) or changes occur that remind you how tenuous are the structures of the life you hold carefully, like a bird’s skull found in the woods, in your palms. This can be terrifying, but through the shards there is always a new view, an unexpected happening. The causes of this foundation shaking are many: a move, a job change, the discovery you are living with an adolescent, a loss of a loved one, a significant upheaval—and suddenly you feel stark and vulnerable. In these moments, I turn to the writers I love and suddenly something I have glossed over calls out anew—staggers me with beauty and connection. We may struggle, but we do not struggle alone—someone else, somewhere has scratched out words to the feeling.

This searching ordeal. It has been an unusually fatiguing day, a chapter of accidents. –L. Bloom, p. 631, Ulysses by James Joyce

Possibly perceiving an expression of dubiosity on their faces, the globetrotter went on adhering to his adventures. –L. Bloom, p. 725, Ulysses by James Joyce

Throw Yourself Like a Seed

Miguel de Unamuno

Shake off this sadness, and recover your spirit
sluggish you will never see the wheel of fate
that brushes your heel as it turns going by,
the man who wants to live is the man in whom life is abundant.

Now you are only giving food to that final pain
which is slowly winding you in the nets of death,
but to live is to work, and the only thing which lasts
is the work; start then, turn to the work.

Throw yourself like seed as you walk, and into your own field,
don’t turn your face for that would be to turn it to death,
and do not let the past weigh down your motion.

Leave what’s alive in the furrow, what’s dead in yourself,
for life does not move in the same way as a group of clouds;
from your work you will be able one day to gather yourself.

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