Kumi Obata, Refreshing dream, etching (2007)
Early on a summer morning, the park is a magical place. On the way there, I pass other early risers along the river pathway. Dog walkers, joggers, a man facing the water with his stand and sheet music set up, strumming a guitar and playing the harmonica as one foot taps out the rhythm. In the field across from him some boys kick around a soccer ball while a group of elderly people practice tai chi beneath the trees.
I walk under the railway bridge and enter the park, where the river opens out into a large pond. On my iPod, Maria Callas is singing an aria by Saint-Saëns. It begins to rain, and I feel my heart soar with the beauty of her voice and the trees and water, and gratitude that I am here. Continue reading Love, Tokyo
Naomi Okubo, Greeting card from Paradise, acrylic on cotton cloth (2016)
I hesitated for some time before making this blog public. And again before putting up my previous post. Then recently I came across this passage in Rebecca Solnit’s collection of essays, The Faraway Nearby, which gave me comfort and courage. Continue reading On sharing
Today’s post will be a short one, to share this excerpt from Yiyun Li’s essay ‘Dear Friend From My Life I Write to You in Your Life’. She writes about a childhood friend who committed suicide shortly after they resumed their correspondence as adults. I think this is a beautiful reminder of the power of writing to connect. Continue reading Only connect
In yesterday’s post I mentioned this article by Maria Popova. I’m glad I read it again. I needed to be reminded that I’m doing the right thing as I get ready to leave my job and move to a new city in a few weeks’ time. For months I’d been worrying about finding work. Then one day I decided to just stop stressing. And within the same week, found myself turning down three separate job opportunities. Continue reading Life is short / Mid-life goals: part 1
‘All art is quite useless. So is a flower.’ Marlene Dumas, Oscar Wilde, oil on canvas (2016).
I started this blog earlier this year after a friend encouraged me try it for just three months. I wanted to record the ideas I’d been coming across in interviews and books that have had an impact on my life. I’d scribbled notes in journals but I wanted to bring them together in a more coherent way. I also wanted to share the links, excerpts and references I’ve found useful. And connect with people interested in similar things. It wasn’t so much about writing – I think I’ve always been better at story-telling/fiction than essays – as about sharing. Except I wasn’t sharing the posts. I hadn’t found the courage. Continue reading A trail of thoughtful examinations