Why read?

a blog about the intersection of books and life, will give you a start on figuring it out, citing the memorable (?) Zagajewski.

We are catch basins, reservoirs of learning, wisdom and beauty recalled. About ecstatic reading, Zagajewski says: “[B]ooks contain not only wisdom and well-ordered information but also a kind of energy that comes close to dance and shamanist drunkenness.”

That’s a little strong. My pilot light burns at a more modest setting. I can’t dance and have never met a shaman. I liken reading at its best to an inspired, deferential conversation.

Zagajewski suggests we read broadly, haphazardly. If you’re a poet, read more than poetry, certainly beyond contemporary poetry – “a shadow of premature professionalism hovers over this practice. A shadow of shallowness.” Read beyond a phrase I hate – “your comfort zone.” This applies to all of us, not just poets: . . .

Read the rest and think, does that help?

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