July 06, 2010

Telegram from Oxford

I'm just about to get on the road for Nashville, where I am reading at Davis-Kidd tonight (7 PM, 2121 Green Hills Village Drive). After that it's Tupelo this Friday, for a lunchtime event at Reed's Gum Tree Bookstore.


Not sure anything can top the time we had at Square Books last week. A full crowd, the presentation of a gorgeous broadside designed for "The Piano Speaks," and despite all the hollering of my time here at blues show after blues show, my voice held up. (Thanks to not one but two water bottles downed beforehand, and a little light yodeling in the bathroom to loosen my vocal cords.) Richard Howorth, the bookstore's proprietor--and truly, the heart of Oxford, not to mention its former mayor--even reviewed it for the bookstore's blog.


I've been wandering. Went to Greenwood to see Turnrow Books, another great Mississippi independent that could use your support. If you come to Oxford or the Delta, do stop in for a reading or to buy a book. Greenwood is a town that's been revitalized almost singlehandedly by the man behind Viking Range Corporation--Fred Carl, Jr., is a Greenwood native who wanted to bring the wealth back to his hometown. Their latest windfall is that it has been selected as the place of filming for the movie based on Kathryn Stockett's The Help. 


Went to Indianola, where we walked through the new B.B. King museum with Mr. King himself in the house; he was playing later that night. Went to Clarksdale, where I played pool (badly) at Ground Zero and spotted the club's owner--Morgan Freeman--hanging out in the parking lot.


Stopped off at the Shack-Up Inn outside Clarksdale. The compound combines a refurbished Cotton Gin, which has a row of modest rooms called the "bins" (only $65/night) and a central area that doubles as a venue for live music, weddings, and probably the occasional throw-down party apropos of nothing.


The main attraction is the cluster of shotgun shacks that were rescued from historic properties where they would have been demolished. Each has been fixed up a bit, but not too much, as a standalone rental property. The devil and the divinity is in the details, which could easily feel like exploitative kitsch in the wrong hands. But I liked it.


I've been trying to figure out how to put into words what my time here is meaning to me. But I'll let Eudora Welty take care of it:


"it's the living that makes me want to write, not reading--although it's reading that makes me love writing."


Sometimes you gotta do the living first, and trust that the words will follow.

17 comments:

Kristin said...

I like your last sentences. I've been away from writing, on vacation, living fully from moment to moment. I trust that I've been filling my well, and there will be plenty of time later to ponder and transform these experiences into poetry and other art forms.

Leslie said...

Nice. You are taking full advantage of your residency, for sure!

芸茂芸茂 said...

走過路過~不能錯過~哈哈............................................................

Blood Routes said...

BB King and Morgan Freeman...throw in David Fincher and I would consider my life complete.

-Barry Napier
www.barrynapierwriting.wordpress.com

ju吳phe宇te佳ns said...

要經常發表文章 最愛你了呦............................................................

Maggie May said...

that quote is Absolutely IT for me, that is it. the more i do and see and watch and feel the more inspired i am to write.

we stayed in Nashville in August a few years ago with all our kids- i have family there- and it was 104 the entire week! i loved it. i was swept away with that ole southern charm.

志張sf夏康如皓志gfg志 said...

人生的苦惱,不在擁有太少,而在奢望太多。..................................................

靜宸靜宸 said...

我在戀愛著?--------是的,因為我在等待著.................................................................

王美妹 said...

每日都有新日光,每日都有新希望。..................................................

韋以韋以 said...

與人相處不妨多用眼睛說話,多用嘴巴思考. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

佳瑩佳瑩 said...

知識可以傳授,智慧卻不行。每個人必須成為他自己。. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

許惠吟許惠吟 said...

出遊不拘名勝,有景就是好的..................................................................

陳梁雅雯宗翰 said...

河水永遠是相同的,可是每一剎那又都是新的。. . . . . . . . . .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

家唐銘 said...

道歉是人類一定必要的禮節..................................................

子吳吳豪 said...

人生中最好的禮物就是屬於自己的一部份............................................................

浩子 said...

Never put off till tomorrow what may be done today..................................................................

張韓涵旺建宇 said...

快樂,是享受工作過程的結果......................................................................