It’s the only thing!”
The last 10 days in my world have been a huge reminder of just that.
It started with a trip to the airport. A trip on which no book I owned volunteered to go. This is not a usual event in my world.
Then, in the airport bookstore, a volunteer found me.
There were shelves full of books that were decidedly not calling to me. Books whose titles did not even make me curious. One of which I bought in a moment of perceived need. Need for something to read on the plane.
Then, as I was making my way to the door, one of those books that just calls to you sometimes… even when it’s not your usual thing. Even when you have no idea why.
It was higher than I could reach. Sparkling, literally, on the shelf. A new novel by Alice Hoffman.
The Book of Magic…
I adored one of her earlier novels, The Dovekeepers. I’ve read it 5 or 6 times, most recently a couple of months ago, as we were beginning the Forest of Grandmothers journey.
Some of the rest of her books, not so much. (Though I’m beginning to suspect that may have had as much to do with me as a reader not yet ready as it did with Hoffman as a writer!)
Just between us, though, the whole magic thing felt quite a bit out of my go-to comfort genre’.
A complex family of women with generations of stories about magic. Or at least what they called magic. Knowing. Healing. Speaking. Writing. Things which women were not, according to the traditions many of us learned, supposed to do.
There were times when I felt like it was Harry Potter, et al, for grand-elders.
And, if we’re being honest, times when I remembered the crushed third grader who was only permitted to read book mobile books with orange tape on the spines because they were the ones for people like me.
And still, I read.
It wasn’t until page 249 that I began to know why! Here are some glimpses…
If it isn’t written down, it will likely be forgotten, Isabelle had told her. That was why women had been illiterate for so long; reading and writing gave power and power was what had been so often denied to women (249).
A woman with knowledge, one who could read and write, and who spoke her own mind had always been considered dangerous (251).
As Sally went forward she thought about the women before her who had fought to protect those they loved, those who had been erased from history, who never had a chance to tell their own stories (327).
And, all around me as I read, my girls were being and growing and learning.
The writer in me knows that we can never be certain that what we read is what a writer intended.
Here’s a hint, though, about what I intend for this moment, with all the Advocate Grammy energy empowering the Guide within me…
We learn so that we can help our littles speak, write, paint, dance, be… their stories. And be magic for a new world!
ps… the amazing sculpture in the photo was my Christmas gift from my not-quite-12-year-old grandperson, Taylor!
pps… for a glimpse of some of my art, hoping for forever homes, check out FierceArtWithHeart. The elves are still in a holiday mood and there are special goodies for those of you who’ve found your Intentional Grandmother Archetype. If you haven’t found it yet, CLICK HERE!