Between Panic & Desire

That’s a superb title, isn’t it?  The title alone made me want to buy Dinty W. Moore’s book, but the Prologue quickly confirmed I’d be glad I did.  I am also a regular reader of Brevity’s blog, edited by Moore, and an accompaniment to Brevity magazine, a journal devoted to “the extremely brief (750 words or less) essay form.”  All are worth a read.  Enjoy the excerpt below from the Prologue of Between Panic & Desire.

Deep in the scrub hills of Jefferson County, about eight miles north of Punxsutawney, lay two towns, Panic and Desire, separated by farms, trees, and a narrow road.

Returning from Pittsburgh one morning, I tug my steering wheel to the left, swing off the main highway, and motor up a steep rise. I have seen Panic and Desire on a map, and for some reasons I want to visit.

Desire comes first, and proves to be little more than a few old houses and a modest cemetery  I’m curious how the town got such a name, what it is like to live here, what the people know that I don’t, so I roll my compact car down the main road, looking for someone to ask.

But no one is out.

The graveyard appears to be my only alternative. I search the ancient stones for clues until a large white dog appears from nowhere. He shows me his teeth, follows me to my car, and barks his sharp warning until I leave.

So I head to Panic, a five-minute drive past tumbledown homes and modest trailers – families who have lost their farms, and those who are barely hanging on.

Like Desire, Panic turns out to be just a few ragtag family houses along a strip of asphalt. One of the homes has been completely gutted by fire and blackened furniture litters the front lawn. It looks as if it has been this way for months.

A white-haired gentleman bundled into an orange hunting jacket ambles down the road, so I step out of my car, walk toward him. “Any idea,” I ask, “why they call this place Panic?”

He gives me an odd look.

“How about Desire?”

The man in orange shakes his head, offers a sad shrug, hurries down the road before I can squeeze in another question.

I’m intrigued, though, and fairly stubborn. In nearby DuBois there is a library, and I am heading more or less in that direction.

Twenty minutes later and I’m in the stacks, unearthing a handful of local history books. For the next two hours I settle in at a wide table and read about the first European settlers – German and Scotch-Irish farmers pushing west across Pennsylvania in the early 1800s. The hills were full of deer, wild turkeys, and wolves.

There is no mention of Panic or Desire.

I ask the librarian.  She doesn’t know either.

So I return to my car, but instead of continuing east toward home, I double back, revisiting the road that separates Panic from Desire.

At what I approximate to be the halfway point, I pull over, switch off the ignition, and get out one more time into the cold March air. I am in the middle of a small patch of hemlock, a secluded spot, and it is here that I finally realize I don’t want the actual answer, the truth of where these towns found their names. The mystery is sweeter.

I just bask in the unknown for a while, alone on the road, halfway between Panic and Desire.

Until it occurs to me: I have been here all my life.

A Writer’s Identity

A few months ago, I attended my first writing group, and I instantly realized that I had no identity.  Because I was a newcomer, all the seasoned, confident, group members – many of them published – were asked to introduce themselves, which only some of them did.  The group, so accustomed to each other and seemingly unused to newcomers, had a hard time staying on task as the leader prompted each of them to share their names and writing genres.  Even before the meeting officially began, the man I sat next to asked me what I write.

“Ahhh, … essay, … some memoir,” I responded. My answer sounded more like a question than a statement and I was sure I looked intimidated, unsure of myself.

“Do you mean essay, memoir, or memoir essays?” He continued.

“Um, … All of the above?” I fumbled for an answer again, the student who thinks the teacher is asking a trick question.  Thankfully, he gave me a break, anddescribed the mix of writers’ that attended this particular weekly session.  I was silently grateful that the meeting began before I could be further flustered by his polite attempt to match my face to a genre.

Becky (Facilitator, anxious to get the meeting moving): “Tom, why don’t you start us off?”

Tom (Pleasant, bald gentleman, whose well-groomed salt and pepper facial hair makes me wonder if he invented the goatee): “Sure.  My name is Tom, and I am writing a novel – a dystopian thriller that takes place in the Bay Area.”

A what? I thought, but nodded and smiled as though I knew exactly what that was.

Becky: “Joan?”

Joan (Disgruntled woman that looked of retirement age and wore a tired facial expression): “I don’t want to read tonight.  In fact, I might never read here again after last time.”

Becky (Slightly snappy, losing patience): “This isn’t about reading.  Do you want to introduce yourself?”

Joan (Confused, still oblivious to my presence): “No, I don’t.  Why would I?”

I really don’t mind if she doesn’t introduce herself.  I mentally attempted to head off the awkward conflict.

Becky (Exasperated): “There’s a new person here.  Can’t you at least introduce yourself?”

Joan: “Oh.  Well, I guess.  I’m Joan.”

Boy, is she grumpy.  I smiled, unfazed by her bitterness – it reminded me of a relative I’m fond of, so I could easily look past it.

Becky (Rolling her eyes as she gives up on Joan): “OK, Liz?”

Liz (Late twenties, bubbly, all smiles): “Hi, I’m Liz.  I write YA, and have a novel coming out next February.”

I’ve always wondered what motivates people to write YA.  Maybe now I’ll find out.

Becky: “Mike?”

Mike (40s-ish, excited): “I have a new piece tonight.  I’ve been working on a Sci-Fi short story.”

Wow, talk about diversity.

The introductions continued, and in addition to the YA (Young Adult for those that don’t speak in writers’ code), dystopian (Wikipedia says a dystopia is the idea of a society in a repressive and controlled state, often under the guise of being utopian), and Sci-Fi writers, I learned I was amongst a group that included writers of historical fiction (one WWII novel in progress, another set in the time of the Spanish Conquistadors), Western (which I would soon learn involved drunken cowboys reading their destiny as inscribed on the worms found at the bottoms of bottles of mescal), creative non-fiction, a rather vocal reviewer whose genre I cannot remember, and a poet.  Then we got down to business.

Various members of the group read from their works in progress, and each had a fifteen-minute time slot for reading and taking comments.  As we listened and read along, the rest of us made notes. We corrected grammatical errors, noted misspellings and typos on the printed pages and passed them back to the author at the close of each reading.  Spoken comments were kept to major points about things like characters and writing tone.  A novelist suggested that a short story be turned into a novel.  The poet recommended a prose piece be edited into a poem.

Luckily, new members aren’t allowed to read until they’ve attended three sessions.  I’m not a very outgoing person, and it took some courage for me to attend the group at all.  In fact, I’d been tossing around the idea for three months before I actually went.  If I were expected to read, I surely would not have come, and if my attendance represented one step forward, then the unexpected genre identification drove me at least three steps backward.

I listened intently to each speaker, though, and felt satisfaction when another member of the group brought up a point I’d also thought of.  If I had no identity as a writer, at least I was capable of reading.  The comments were all over the board.  There were some words of encouragement, but also some blunt criticisms.  In all, the readers took their lumps pretty well, though Becky did have to stop an exchange or two when a writer and reviewer disagreed.

Periodically, Becky leaned over to whisper to me, providing backstory.  Her comments were about logistics – authors weren’t supposed to respond to reviewers’ feedback.  They could follow up later, if they really needed to, but fifteen minutes flies by.  The group had to be repeatedly rushed along like children unwilling to brush their teeth before bed.  She told me it’s always a good idea to bring copies because reading spots open up if scheduled readers don’t show – which happens especially on rainy nights, like that one.

Rain or not, I couldn’t see myself reading my work in front of this group.  Perhaps my hesitation stems from my introverted character, or maybe from the fact that I’m fairly new to writing.  Though I assume the authors probably don’t cling to their genres as tightly as the introductions suggested, each person read or commented with confidence (except perhaps Joan, in her wound-licking state of mind).  The investment they had in the pieces they shared was evident, and each clearly had a writers’ identity.  I couldn’t imagine emulating their performances with any semblance of grace.

I don’t know that I really have a genre.  Because I don’t write fiction, perhaps it’s fair to say my genre is non-fiction.  If I agree with that statement, though, it sounds as though I’ve made a definitive choice, which I haven’t.  And that’s not to mention that like fiction, which runs the gamut from dystopian to romance to just plain literary fiction, non-fiction, too, breaks out into any number of subcategories – memoir, essay, biography, and journalism, to name a few.  Examine the category of essay, and the world of identification opens up all over again.  Lyrical essay, personal essay, nature essay, travel essay – the list goes on and on.

Since I began writing in earnest, not quite a year ago, I’ve simply written about whatever is on my mind.  I’ve written a lot about my life, though I have yet to produce more than a couple of finished pieces.  Perhaps that means I write memoir.  I’ve also written a million papers on leadership as I wrapped up the final year of a Master’s program.  That could mean I’m an academic writer.  I write articles for my professional blog.  In this case, technical writer might be the best label.  Then there are the posts for my personal blog, which range from stories about work to short pieces that come from writing prompts.  Maybe that means I’m an amateur.

Critics of creative non-fiction and memoir say it is weak in comparison to fiction.  They believe that only great minds can tackle fiction, so alternatives are seen as inferior, conceivably because we write about what we know, not what we imagine.  Sometimes, I almost agree with them.  There are moments when it seems an impossible feat to create a world out of words, with imaginary inhabitants, events that shape their lives – offer them pleasure and pain, force them to struggle, but then grow – their personalities emerging slowly on the pages, like a fine piece of glass arrives at the hands and mouth of a master with fire and a blowpipe.

Then I think about my writing.  I often don’t know where to start, and I rarely know where I’m going before I get there, but I strive no less to provide the rich experience I’m sure a fiction writer aims to deliver.  And although I’m not writing fiction right now, I do not preclude myself from doing so at some point.  If I do, who knows what genre I might choose?  Surely, I don’t.  I can’t even say what I’ll write about tomorrow.  In truth, I write to figure out what I have to say, and perhaps that’s why I don’t yet have an identity.  First, I’ll focus on finding my voice.  Perhaps then I’ll be able to tell you what I write.

An Excerpt from Art Objects

I just finished Art Objects (read ‘objects’ as a verb), which I gave you a quick taste of recently.  First, let me admit – again – that I am so enamored of Jeanette Winterson’s writing that I can’t express the impact is has on me.  I believe everyone should have an author whose work they love so much – or multiple authors – the more, the better, really.  So, while Winterson is considered controversial and there are many out there that do not give her words the prominent place in their soul that I do, I cannot help myself from sharing a bit more from this book.

Art Objects is a collection of essays about art, all kinds of art, and people’s relationship with art.  I come from a place where art, except literature, has always seemed out of reach to me.  It was something I associated with wealthy people – snobby people, even.  The worst course I took in college was History of Modern Art.  My other half is an art and theater lover, and I have softened my position some due to her influence – but, I still struggle with unreasonable feelings of self-consciousness in a museum or at the theater – somewhere in the back of my mind, I still feel I don’t belong in that crowd.

Art Objects addresses many aspects of art, and has given me pause to rethink my attitude.  This book alone is not enough to wipe away years of weird discomfort about certain kinds of art, but it did make me think about my own writing as art, among other things.  That said, here is one of a dozen or so passages I earmarked in the book:

Against daily insignificance art recalls to us possible sublimity. It cannot do this if it is merely a reflection of actual life. Our real lives are elsewhere. Art finds them.

Should people be treated as fictions? The question is an ethical one only if we assume that fiction is a copy of actual life. If we do, then art always is autobiography or biography and the skill of the artist is making it into a pretty toy or perhaps an educational instrument. Art should not drag unwilling actors into its animation. … Instead of art aspiring towards lifelikeness what if life aspires towards art, toward a creative controlled focus of freedom, outside the tyranny of matter? What if the joke about life imitating art were a better joke than we think?

Are real people fictions? We mostly understand ourselves through an endless series of stories told to ourselves by ourselves and others. The so-called facts of our individual worlds are highly coloured and arbitrary, facts that fit whatever fiction we have chosen to believe in. It is necessary to have a story, an alibi that gets us through the day, but what happens when thes tory becomes a scripture? When we can no longer recognise anything outside of our own reality? We have to be careful not to live in a state of constant self-censorship, where whatever conflicts with our world-view is dismissed or diluted until it ceases to be a bother. Struggling against the limitations we place upon our minds is our own imaginative capacity, a recognition of an inner life often at odds with the external figurings we spend so much energy supporting. When we let ourselves respond to poetry, to music, to pictures, we are clearing a space where new stories can root, in effect we are clearing a space for new stories about ourselves.

Mother’s Day Traffic Spike

My most-read post in the past week has been Quotes from my crazy Great-Grandmother, driven by many searches for “great grandmother quotes,” and “great grandma quotes.”  I imagine the web surfers that stumbled on my small collection of my great grandma’s quotes got something other than what they were really looking for.  Oh well, maybe they got a little laugh.

I am woefully behind in posting here and reading other blogs because I’ve been focusing my energy on finishing a few essays, getting some critiques at http://www.mywriterscircle.com, interviewing for another new job, starting a professional blog, and writing a bunch of business articles for it.  It seems my brain can only handle a couple of kinds of writing at the same time.  I have the rest of this week, and possibly next, to wrap up some of my projects before I dive into my new job as a management consultant.

Yesterday, I began reading Art Objects, a collection of critical essays by Jeannette Winterson about art.  The writing is dense, the kind you need to really focus on, re-reading paragraphs as you go, turning over in your mind the ideas on the pages.  I’ll leave you with this bit from the first essay, also titled Art Objects.

Every day, in countless ways, you and I convince ourselves about ourselves.  True art, when it happens to us, challenges the ‘I’ that we are.  A love-parallel would be just; falling in love challenges the reality to which we lay claim, part of the pleasure of love and part of its terror, is the world turned upside down.  We want and we don’t want, the cutting edge, the upset, the new views.  Mostly we work hard at taming our emotional enviornment just as we work hard at taming our aesthetic environment.  We already have tamed our physical environment.  And are we happy with all this tameness?  Are you?

Tom Robbins

I have been reading Fierce Invalids Home from Hot Climates, by Tom Robbins.  I bought the book in the indie bookstore in the Milwaukee airport – it’s an odd location for what I’d call a traditional old bookstore.  It’s not a chain, not the typical ‘newstand’ style of airport store that sells overpriced candy, a zillion magazines, and bags of mixed nuts along with t-shirts for the local sports team, but an independently owned store that has a locked up section of rare first-editions and autographed old books, with no discernible Best Seller section.

When I was much younger, I devoured Even Cowgirls Get the Blues, Still Life with Woodpecker, Skinny Legs and All and Jitterbug Perfume.  I couldn’t get enough of the wild irreverence and oddly (but interestingly) placed philosophical meanderings in his writing.  Those same qualities are present in Fierce Invalids, and the book is a supreme example of Robbins’ acrobatic ability with words.  It opens as follows.

“The naked parrot looked like a human fetus spliced onto a kosher chicken. It was so old it had lost every single one of its feathers, even its pinfeathers, and its bumpy, jaundiced skin was latticed by a network of rubbery blue veins.  “Pathological,” muttered Switters, meaning not simply the parrot but the whole scene, including the shrunken old woman in whose footsteps the bird doggedly followed as she moved about the darkened villa. The parrot’s scabrous claws made a dry, scraping noise as they fought for purchase on the terra-cotta floor tiles, and when, periodically, the creature lost its footing and skidded an inch or two, it issued a squawk so quavery and feeble that it sounded as if it were being petted by the Boston Strangler. Each time it squawked, the crone clucked, whether in sympathy or disapproval one could not tell, for she never turned to her devoted little companion but wandered aimlessly from one piece of ancient wooden furniture to another in her amorphous black dress.”

and a few pages later:

” … [Switters] was remembering an actress he used to know, who, in order to entice a tiny trained terrier to follow her around during a movie scene, had had to have scraps of raw calf’s liver stapled to the soles of her high-heeled shoes. Thinking of that terrier magnetized by meat-baited slippers reminded him then of the old bald parrot that had waddled after its mistress … many months before … That’s the way the mind works: the human brain is genetically disposed toward organization, yet if not tightly controlled, will link one imagerial fragment to another on the flimsiest of pretense and in the most freewheeling manner, as it if takes a kind of organic pleasure in creative association, without regard for logic or chronological sequence. Now, it appears that this prose account has unintentionally begun in partial mimicry of the mind. Four scenes have occurred at four different locations and four separate times, some set apart by months or years. And while they do maintain chronological order and a connective element (Switters), and while the motif is a far cry from the kind of stream-of-consciousness technique that makes Finnegans Wake simultaneously the most realistic and the most unreadable book ever written (unreadable precisely because it is so realistic), still, alas, the preceding is probably not the way in which an effective narrative ought properly to unfold – not even in these days when the world is showing signs of awakening from its linear trance, its dangerously restrictive sense of itself as a historical vehicle chugging down a one-way street toward some preordained apocalyptic goal. Henceforth, this account shall gather itself at an acceptable starting point (every beginning in narration is somewhat arbitrary and the one that follows is no exception), from which it shall then move forward in a so-called timely fashion, shunning the wantonly tangential influence of the natural mind and stopping only occasionally to smell the adjectives or kick some ass.”

I am again amazed at his ability with words, and how easily he breaks the rules of fiction, as seen above when he abandons the story line abruptly and speaks directly – author to reader.

Diversity and Random Encounters

Those of you that read this blog regularly know what a fan I am of randomness – random people, random facts, random language, random encounters.  Friday night, I was out with some friends at my local dive bar, and went outside to have a smoke.  While I stood in front of a row parked cars, I was approached by a 20-something kid, who apologetically asked,

“Would it be OK if I purchased a cigarette from you?”

“Sure, no problem.  You don’t need to pay me,” I said.  “You can just have one.”

“Oh, but I just hate it when people walk up to me and ask for one,” he replied.

“It’s really no problem,” I assured him.  “Here you go.”

“Thanks,” he said in a soft voice, then turned and walked back in the direction he’d come from.

He got about 20 feet away, then stopped, paused, turned around, and came back.

“You know that laundromat down there?” he pointed towards the huge, generic Coin Laundry at the end of the strip mall.

“Yeah,” I said.  “I know it.”

“I work there every night,” he said.  “When you have to do your laundry, if you come at night, I’ll be there.”  He seemed excited to share his schedule with me.

“I was just there two days ago,” I replied.  “But I was there during the day.”

“Really?  Oh.  I only work at night.”  He went from puzzled that he didn’t recognize me to understanding why not.

“I had the worst time getting that damn money card machine to work!” I told him.

Seems the Coin Laundry doesn’t take coins any longer – you have to pump single dollar bills into a machine with a plastic money card in it, then you stick that money card into a slot on the washer or dryer you want to use.  When I first tried to use the machine, I couldn’t get it to spit out a new card.  A helpful woman intervened when she saw my idiocy, then tried to explain in Spanish that the machine wasn’t working if you chose the English language menu.  I couldn’t follow her, so she finally just took the money from my hand, punched some buttons to get to the Spanish menu, fed it a couple of my singles, and there my card was.

“Oh, you’re not the first,” my young laundromat friend laughed.  “I’ll help you out next time,” he said, seeming satisfied with this offer of help in exchange for the cigarette I’d given him.  With that, he was on his way back to work.

Later that evening, I went outside again.  A group of four people stood chattering together near the door.  I joined them so I wouldn’t be that one random person standing alone pretending to be oblivious to the little crowd a few feet away.  I recognized one of the four – he’s a guy my friends and I call Axl Rose because he has stringy, long, blond hair, wears rock band T-shirts, and always sings things like Def Leppard when it’s his turn at the karaoke mic.  The other three, one woman, two men, were unfamiliar faces.  I was introduced to each, though I couldn’t understand the names of the two men.  The group was in good spirits.  The woman struck me as the sort that was excited by the prospect of playing games, even the made up sort you drum up in the car on a long road trip.  Happy that the thought had come to her, she asked each of us where we were from.

“Wisconsin,” I said.

“Norway,” said Axl Rose.

“Japan,” said man #2.

“Tibet,” said man #3.

“I’m from good old Oakland,” said the woman who’d started us talking about our childhood homes.

The conversation went on for a couple of minutes as we all marveled at the diversity among us, and the distances everyone traveled at some point to end up at the same dive bar in a strip mall in a residential suburb of San Francisco.  In our moment of solidarity, linked together through drinking, smoking, and generally horrible singing at a bar with velvet wallpaper, I realized, in Bokononist terms, we were a granfalloon, and I sent a quick mental thanks to Kurt Vonnegut.

Convergence

I’ve been noticing for some time that the most-read post on my blog is the one called Parental Secrets.  I wrote it when I found out unexpectedly that I had a half-sister that was adopted into another family when I was a child.  A half-sister I didn’t know existed until six or eight months ago.  It’s curious to me that this is my most-read post.  People seem to Google the term ‘parental secrets’ pretty frequently, which makes me even more curious about just what it is all those people are searching for that they don’t already know about their parents and think they might find on the Internet.

Today, I finished Jeannette Winterson’s memoir, Why Be Happy When You Could Be Normal?  A Winterson fan, I ravaged the book daily on the train into the city every day this week, and wrapped it up when I got home tonight. I loved it, but for reasons unexpected.  Her writing is entirely different than that in her novels, which makes sense, considering the whimsy, the fantasy, the intricately woven metaphors in her fiction.  That style is not suited quite so well to the telling of a personal history, though her genius with words is still evident throughout the memoir.

After I graduated from high school, I went to college for exactly one semester.  I happened to take an English Lit course, and one of the assigned readings was T.S. Eliot’s Burnt Norton, the first poem of his Four Quartets.  Even if you’re a regular reader of this blog, you may not know how that poem tore open the meaning of passion for me.  When it was assigned by my professor, he handed out off-center photocopies, made from a book opened and placed face down on the copy machine, odd patches of dark shadow in the corners, text warped in a subtle curve where the center crease of the spine refused to lie flat.  I still have that photocopy, smudged from having been handled so many times, the texture more fuzzy cotton than paper where it has been folded in half for twenty years, tucked away in the box of sacred things I save.

I began reading Jeanette Winterson’s books a few years later, I think, though I don’t remember specifically when it was.  As I delved into Sexing the Cherry, Written on the Body, and The Passion, I occasionally felt something familiar about certain phrases, certain lines in her novels.  I couldn’t name it at first – but I slowly began to feel that some of her writing reminded me of Burnt Norton, specifically with reference to the presentation of time.  I shrugged it off, thinking I must be imagining things.  I continued to notice subtle similarities, though, and eventually, I read a sentence that matched word-for-word a line I knew was in Burnt Norton.  I was thrilled in a way that may make sense to no one but me, but there was something about the fact that I’d made this connection through my own observations that seemed profound.  No instructor had pointed me in this direction, and I had no idea what Winterson’s background was.  I just loved the things I was reading, and I stumbled across a connection that had great meaning for me.

I have no idea if it was conscious or not that Winterson wrote what she did.  Perhaps it was pure coincidence, or perhaps I fabricated this connection because I wanted it to be there.  It doesn’t really matter, though.  What mattered was the depth of feeling the experience inspired in me, and still does.   So, by now, you can probably imagine the satisfaction I felt when Winterson spoke of Eliot’s Four Quartets, and even included a direct quote from Burnt Norton in her memoir.  It made that thin thread I thought I saw so many years ago a little thicker in my mind’s eye.

Why Be Happy When You Could Be Normal? spoke directly to my soul, in more ways than I can recount here without turning this into a novel itself, which I am perilously close to doing already.  One of the ways it did so was in Winterson’s rich description of her experience as an adopted child.  I haven’t known many people who were adopted.  The only adopted person I’ve known well seemed not to care a whit that she had been separated from her birth parents, but I figure she has to be the exception.  I assume it has to be very difficult to come to terms with not knowing who your parents are, wondering why they gave you away, thinking on bad days that you wish you had the life you were born to, a life you convince yourself you should have had.  Mostly, though, I think it’s one of those things that you just can’t know as an observer.  Winterson’s story peeled back layers for me, though, bringing me perhaps as close as I can come to understanding, from the perspective of an adopted person, the nagging feeling that something in you is missing, always has been, and always will be.

Of course, this brings me back full circle to the beginning of this post.  Over the past months, the subject of adoption has become much more personal to me.  I’ve slowly gotten to know more about the half-sister I never knew I had.  The experience has at different times both satisfied me and left me wanting.  I’m sure my half-sister has felt more extreme versions of those feelings than I have.  At first, we emailed each other frequently, and I poured out stories about myself, searching for the characteristics we might have in common.  Over time, our communication has become very spotty, and it seems we don’t know what to say to each other.  Is blood thicker than water?  If I’m honest, I don’t think so, but that doesn’t stop me from wanting deeper connections. It doesn’t stop me from searching for those places of convergence, where the things that are important to me come together in a way that makes them bigger and bolder than they were when they stood apart.  Perhaps the irony in all of this is that even though I wasn’t adopted, I, too, have always had a nagging feeling that something in me was missing.  When it comes down to it, who doesn’t?  Sometimes it seems the more we look at our differences, the more we realize we’re all the same.

P.S.  If you are so inclined, you can read Burnt Norton here.