30 March 2010

Pages with Pomegranates

So far, this has been a year of engrossing books. Often I'm drawn to books that strengthen and challenge me spiritually, intellectually, and creatively. And this year is no different, except that I'm finding myself with books I wouldn't have found unless someone placed them in my hands. One of the good things about being in a book group is that I get to read books I wouldn't ordinarily choose. And Traveling with Pomegranates, this month's pick, is doubtless the best book I'd never have chosen on my own.

The book is a sort of travelogue-memoir split between Sue Monk Kidd (author of The Secret Life of Bees) and her daughter Ann Kidd Taylor. Sue grapples with the transition into her postmenopausal fifties while Ann deals with what to do after college when her life plan completely falls apart. They travel to Greece, they travel to France, they develop a closer relationship, and they each journey toward self discovery and acceptance. In both of them I see myself, see my own struggles to accept myself and my lot in life.

As I read I usually think one of three things:
  1. I want to write a book like this.
  2. I want to go on a trip with my mom.
  3. I need to be kinder and more accepting of myself.
I also find I need my journal close at hand so I can scribble down notes: "writing ambition v. just being," "contemplative writer," "be messy and free," "stop doubting." Also, I jotted down lines Ann cites from a poem by David Whyte:
You must learn one thing.
The world was made to be free in.
Give up all the other worlds
except the one to which you belong.
Only halfway through I sort of wish this book wouldn't end. It's a book I'd like to inhabit. And I'm grateful that it found its way into my hands and my constellation of books, research for the road ahead.

4 comments:

marti said...

pass it to me when you get done. I am looking for an inspirational read. My last couple have been fun fluff.Got any other good life journey type titles?

Lindsay said...

Marti, sadly, it's from the library and I have to get it back on Thursday. You should put it on hold, though. Have you read The Cloister Walk by Kathleen Norris? I think you'd really like it. :)

Christine said...

Oh, how wonderful. I love Sue Monk Kidd - When the Heart waits is one of my favorite books. I'll have to add this to my Goodreads list!

B said...

Thanks for the review. Came over from Fifty-Two Fifty-Two. I love Kidd's fiction. Loved When the Heart Waits. I didn't know about this new book. I'll have to check it out. Sounds wonderful. Glad to have found your blog. B.