Wednesday, August 09, 2006

To the Lighthouse


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Marblehead Lighthouse on Lake Erie.

Why create? Virginia Woolf answers this in her novel, To The Lighthouse. We create because we have to, because it keeps us sane, because it's a way to feel what it means to be alive. This is what Woolf says at the end of her novel. The character is just finishing a painting:

Quickly...she turned to her canvas. there it was--her picture. Yes, with all its greens and blues. its lines running up and across, its attempt at something. It would be hung in attics, she thought; it would be destroyed. But what did that matter? she asked herself, taking up her brush again. She looked at the steps; they were empty; she looked at her canvas; it was blurred. With sudden intensity, as if she saw it clear for a second, she drew a line there, in the centre. It was done; it was finished. Yes, she thought, laying down her brush in extreme fatigue. I have had my vision.



6 comments:

V said...

Marianne Moore:
...........................
So he who strongly feels,
behaves. The very bird,
grown taller as he sings, steels
his form straight up. Though he is captive,
his mighty singing
says, satisfaction is a lowly
thing, how pure a thing is joy.
This is mortality,
this is eternity.

Gannet Girl said...

That lighthouse photo is fabulous!

Anonymous said...

Love this post. It is comforting to me, because so much of the time I feel like an outsider and misunderstood and yet that is exactly the way I feel about my art (writing)-----except that I need to make some money to survive, and I need some way to get health insurance (having been turned down by Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield) and I crave publication in places that more people will read my work. But it has to be MY work, I can't compromise and write trash (intentionally!) just to get published in a commercial or national magazine. Best, Teagrapple

emmapeelDallas said...

I agree, I relate to this. I write because I have to, and it does keep me sane, and happy.

Erin said...

A beautiful passage!

Hisham said...

Wonderful post. It can be testing being a writer as not many, even close ones, might understand what you go through, what you need as a writer.

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