On today’s episode of The Literary Life, Angelina and Cindy interview poet, author and mother, Sally Thomas. You can find Sally and some of her writing at www.sally-thomas.com. Sally talks about her early reading life beginning with her memories of her family members reading themselves and to her. Cindy and Angelina ask her about her early forays into storytelling and writing. They discuss how literature and story are for everyone, including scientists and mathematicians, not just those who already have a bent toward reading. Sally shares about the influential teachers she had who fed her love of the written word.
Angelina asks about how Sally approaches the balance between the reading life and the writing life. They also discuss how the seasons of Sally’s family life shifted her focus somewhat away from active writing but were still fruitful in other ways. Cindy asks what Sally likes to read as a diversion, and Angelina brings up the topic of how to deal with a reading slump. They wrap up their chat reveling in the reward of homeschooling and teaching their own children, and what a joy it is both to raise readers but to become better readers themselves.
Listen to The Literary Life:
Angelina Stanford and Thomas Banks will be presenting a 3-day webinar series on Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol on November 12-14. Register here to get lifetime access to the sessions.
Angelina will also be in Austin, TX at Christ Church on November 25, 2019. More information is available here.
My Father Drawing in an Upstairs Room
by Sally Thomas
Outside, on a live stirring backdrop of broad-handed green,
The black cat on her branch spreads her back toes and licks, licks, between.
He looks musingly at her, and through her, as if right now he
Saw some mystery imposed on — or being born from — the tree.
On the table, five charcoal-drawn children roughhouse in a whiteness
You might see as empty. You might discern in it the likeness
Of a person who waits and observes, is as happy to wait
Forever for something to happen beyond these five straight
Black figures like capering trees in a cosmos of snow.
In my mind the catalpa leaves roofing the morning still glow
Sun-heavy, alive. These five children he’s caught in their white
Fleet-foot moment perdure, as all shadows survive on daylight.
He’s looking at them, as in this long instant I’ve seen him.
Once more the cat spreads her black toes, once more licks between them.
Copyright 2018, Sally Thomas. Used by permission.
Fallen Water by Sally Thomas
Richeldis of Walsingham by Sally Thomas
Sound and Sense by Laurence Perrine
The Intellectual Life by Sertillanges
The Agony and the Ecstasy by Irving Stone
The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgeson Burnett
Arms and the Man by George Bernard Shaw
Paradise Lost by John Milton
The Book of the Red King by Marly Youmans
Mr. Either/Or by Aaron Poochigian
The Wheel on the School by Meinert DeJong
Brother Cadfael series by Ellis Peters
Excellent Women by Barbara Pym
Delta Wedding by Eudora Welty
The Lost Words by Robert McFarlane
Landmarks by Robert McFarlane
Support The Literary Life:
Become a patron of The Literary Life podcast as part of the “Friends and Fellows Community” on Patreon, and get some amazing bonus content! Thanks for your support!