Monday, July 13, 2015

All Along Her Watchtower

All Along Her Watchtower


Harper Lee's first book comes out tomorrow. First book. As in before TKAM. She wrote it. Not you. Harper. Lee. Remember that.

I keep reading all these pathetic sniveling comments on the internet by otherwise seemingly intelligent adults. Things like they are afraid to read this book. They don't want to know how Scout turned out or who Atticus became or what happened to Jem. They don't want to know. Isn't that amazing?

To Kill a Mockingbird was such a powerful story with such deeply developed characters and such a holy moral code. It etched into people's minds the ideals of justice and innocence and loyalty and parenthood and righteousness. And reflection. That narrative. That language. Boo.

I was one of those people. If I am to be honest with myself, I have to admit that I spent half my life looking for a woman who could measure up to Scout. Or the Scout who was etched in my mind anyway. Pathos!

That was not very fair to the women I actually met, loved, married, and left. Downright delusional, really. I was well into my fifties before I cut out that nonsense. That borrowed righteousness. That pretend ownership of a character I did not could not create and could not should not control.

Scout, alas, belongs to Harper Lee, not me. Not you either, dummy. A tremendous sense of liberation awaits you if you have yet to realize it.

I can't wait to read Go Set a Watchman. I am going to feast on every word. Rejoice in every conversation. Soak up in wide-eyed fascination who became what and how. In the future that came before. Time. Is. Not. Linear. People and places and stories...not yours. Hers. From her watchtower. She's the watchwoman.

Harper. Lee. Set my mind ablaze again. I promise not to cling to anything as my childhood turns to ashes and my future takes its place. The future that always was. The past that will never be. Right here. Right now. There. And then. It's your world, Ms. Lee. I'm just passing through.

Peace, Love, and Fiction,

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