“The world changes according to the way people see it, and if you alter, even but a millimeter the way people look at reality, then you can change it.” – James Baldwin
What calls you to alter the way you think, act, and engage? What calls you to enjoy and examine new literature?
As pandemic life grates and wares away my perception of normalcy, the word alter holds greater weight in the alcoves of my daily routine. With the perverse and archaic daylight savings routine come the bliss of warmth on a bare arm. I find these micro changes bring about pause. And the silence of this is abruptly filled with a headline induced guttural-snap-back into the reality of what is and isn’t ahead. Major shifts with bigger implications: melting ice, Meghan Markle, Mars.
It’s our relationship to these micro and major alterations that we will explore over the next two months. Let’s look at the role of literary words in creating subtle and sublime change. Have you ever read a short poem or a sentence that has altered you forever. Would so much be changing at once in your world or the greater world without that literary experience? Would change happen faster and more fluently if we consumed literature the way we consume food? (Several times a day.) With the common understanding that a varied diet full of vitamin and antioxidant rich foods is healthiest. With a further knowledge that new flavours – new cuisines – add passion.
We will look at the small things that we can do each day to alter our own lives and our daily practices – our rituals. We will explore mindfulness for children and the alteration in how we view and teach its importance. We will explore the environmental impacts of colonialism as examined through fiction – and the importance of bringing art and humanity into the conversation. We will negotiate the overwhelming power and relevance of the poetry in these tumultuous times. We will explore the newly clichéd question – through our poetry exploration - of whether or not this is all just a simulation…
I am so excited to share our Alter picks over the next two months. Stay in touch. Let us know your favorite books that alter minds, life, the planet, the universe.
Thanks for coming on this journey!
-Candice Suchocki Weir