A quote from Marcel Proust


“The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes.”

~Marcel Proust


The Four Agreements

Do you remember when this book was hot about ten years ago?  I read it and donated it, but found myself wanting to read it again “with new eyes,” as I like to say.  Here are the four agreements, which I find very powerful:

The Four Agreements
by Don Miguel Ruiz

Be Impeccable With Your Word
Speak with integrity.  Say only what you mean.  Avoid using the word to speak against yourself or to gossip about others.  Use the power of your word in the direction of truth and love.

Don’t Take Anything Personally
Nothing others do is because of you.  What others say and do is a projection of their own reality, their own dream.  When you are immune to the opinions and actions of others, you won’t be the victim of needless suffering. Continue reading

The Happiness Project Feed

I added to my blog an RSS feed of Gretchen Rubin‘s The Happiness Project Blog.  I get a happiness quote in my inbox each morning and really feel inspired by them.  Her website is great and I like the Happiness Toolbox.  Check it out sometime.

Nothing is Original

I posted a graphic of this quote on my other blog, but thought the words were perfect for this one too.

“Nothing is original. Steal from anywhere that resonates with inspiration or fuels your imagination.  Devour old films, new films, music, books, paintings, photographs, poems, dreams, random conversations, architecture, bridges, street signs, trees, clouds, bodies of water, light and shadows.  Select only things to steal from that speak directly to your soul.  If you do this, your work (and theft) will be authentic.  Authenticity is invaluable; originality is not-existent.  And don’t bother concealing your thievery–celebrate it if you feel like it.  In any case, always remember what Jean-Luc Godard said:  “It’s not where you take things from–it’s where you take them to.”

~Jim Jarmusch

A great book about the deadly 1900 Galveston hurricane

I read Erik Larson’s book Isaac’s Storm about ten years ago after reading a lot of good reviews for it.  Prior to reading the book, I had not been aware of the 1900 Galveston hurricane, considered the deadliest in recorded history.

The book follows Isaac Cline, who was stationed at the U.S. Weather Bureau in Galveston, in the days leading up to the storm.  He monitored the weather and his concern grew as residents went about there daily routines, unaware of the horror headed their way.

It’s a slim book worth reading if only to quell our irritation about weather updates interupting our favorite television shows.

Is Ignorance Bliss?

When I first saw the title of this article, my first reaction what that “Yes, sometimes it is bliss.”  The writer asking the question in a Psychology Today article had seen this bumper sticker and at first agreed, then started thinking more about it.

In my younger years, I felt the need to know everything about anything.  With the advent of the internet, news and information came at us in droves and I, like most, couldn’t get enough of it.  I would spend hours trolling around this new resource, drawn in by its allure.

Here we are 15 years later with information filling our every waking moment–we barely have time to sit still and just think.  I can’t help but wonder if this has contributed to the harried, stressed-out nature of people today.  Do we really need to know about every murder, every case of child abuse, starvation, or each minute of the rollercoaster we call Wall Street?

Maybe ignorance is bliss.

Poem: Your Own Worst Nightmare

I had the most horrendous headache yesterday, caused by clenching my jaw (TMJ) while sleeping. While trying to ignore the pain last night, I was reminded of a time I awoke with intense pain in my jaw.  I had taken some pain reliever and while waiting for relief, I started composing lines in my head.  After a few minutes, I forced myself to get up and write down what I had ‘written.’  It’s not
perfect, but it really relates to how I was feeling at the time.  Feel free to send comments or suggestions.

Your Own Worst Nightmare

Heinous laughter escapes as she wrestles her nemesis,
pulling at his cartoonish face and hair, promising impending doom.
Bolts of pain spike to the brain, sending eyelids fluttering.
Stumbling from the warmth, flailing hands search frantically for relief.
Slowly it trickles into the blood, sending instructions up the chain.

Tiny cracks appear gradually, bringing acute discomfort with them.
The old is chipped away creating a nice sturdy foundation for the new.
The perfect porcelain replica assumes its position in the row,
masking signs of previous damage from increased stress.
Relief trickles into the blood, sending signals of hope to the brain.

The hammer strikes steel, sending mandibular tension to the top.
The pretty new one holds firm, barring any chance of fracture.
The root remains hidden, resentful of the new it must bolster.
Slowly over time the old shows itself, lest it be forgotten.
Panic trickles into the blood, pleadings for liberation in vain.

© Liza Bennett

All Rights Reserved

Poem: “Echoes”

Several years ago I discovered that I could indeed write.  I would ask myself what others have asked, “Is this poetry?”  I discovered that I had a lot to say, with all those musings constantly filling my thoughts.  As I studied the writing craft, I found myself searching for new ways, usually through metaphor, to convey what I was feeling in a way that the reader would not know my intention.  Continue reading

A journal entry about legacy.

January 29, 2007

I read a book several years ago—actually, I think I’ve read it three times now—Fortune’s Rocks by Anita Shreve. The story took place in the late 1800s, off the Maine coast. The main characters turned an old convent into a home for pregnant, unwed girls. This book is my favorite Shreve novel. It was a good story

Several years later, Shreve had a new book out called Sea Glass. It too was set along the Maine coast, in the year 1929. The characters in this book move into an abandoned house that was built in the previous book. The old convent, all boarded up, was also mentioned. This was not a central plot point in Sea glass, just mentioned in passing.

I was hit with an expected feeling of great sadness. Fortune’s Rocks ended with the two characters happily together and doing their life’s work. Years later, a boarded up old house was the only remnant of those who came before; new people living their lives in the footprints of people they will never know. Continue reading