So early it’s still almost dark out.
I’m near the window with coffee,
and the usual early morning stuff
that passes for thought.
When I see the boy and his friend
walking up the road
to deliver the newspaper.
They wear caps and sweaters,
and one boy has a bag over his shoulder.
They are so happy
they aren’t saying anything, these boys.
I think if they could, they would take
each other’s arm.
It’s early in the morning,
and they are doing this thing together.
They come on, slowly.
The sky is taking on light,
though the moon still hangs pale over the water.
Such beauty that for a minute
death and ambition, even love,
doesn’t enter into this.
Happiness. It comes on
unexpectedly. And goes beyond, really,
any early morning talk about it.
“Happiness” - Raymond Carver.
I first heard this poem four years ago. It’s been a favorite of mine ever since.
I think, in a way, that writing a novel is like dreaming. Your brain starts digging things up that you’d thought you’d forgotten. You try to answer questions you didn’t even know were still lying there. You realize how long you’ve been holding on to big emotions like hurt feelings and confusion, and also specific details – like a window that always got stuck, or the way someone’s hair curled at their collar.
All of these things become colors on your palette, there for you even if you’re not consciously reaching for them …
A thoughtful, fascinating post from author Rainbow Rowell on a question she’s been getting from many readers: Why is Park, one of the main characters in her novel Eleanor & Park, Korean?
Interesting post - I tend to dream up my characters similarly (their defining traits first.) I’m also really enjoying “Eleanor & Park” right now.