Friday, August 9, 2013

Lectio Divina 155

Saul Bellow, quoted in The New Yorker, July 22, 2013

When you open a novel – and I mean of course the real thing – you enter into a state of intimacy with its writer.  You hear a voice or, more significantly, an individual tone under the words.  This tone you, the reader, will identify not so much by a name, the name of the author, as by a distinct and unique human quality.  It seems to issue from the bosom, from a place beneath the breastbone.  It is more musical than verbal, and it is the characteristic signature of a person, of a soul.

1 comment:

Lindsay Boyer said...

When I read a novel that is “the real thing,” I can feel the writer’s voice calling to me. It is a spiritual experience, yet it doesn’t really matter if the writer is a nice person, a good person, a moral person. I might not know anything about the writer, who could be writing from a distant time and a foreign place. Somehow this feeling of the writer’s soul invites my own voice to awaken and rise up out of me and be in the world. I am invited into intimacy not just with the writer but with something in myself.