Friday, June 4, 2010

real generosity

The great Richard Powers' last novel, Generosity, prescinds from a familiar quote from Camus-- "real generosity toward the future lies in giving all to the present." Sounds very wise, but what it means in practice is an ongoing experiment and challenge. I don't think we can afford to ignore the future, but of course the present is the bird in hand we must attend to.

Then, Powers offers an epigraph from Kay Redfield Jamison:
Exuberance carries us places we would not otherwise go— across the savannah, to the moon, into the imagination — and if we ourselves are not so exuberant we will, caught up by the contagious joy of those who are, be inclined collectively to go yonder.
Exuberance, generosity, presence... to me they all point forward, but they're also all prime markers of the wilderness of childhood: a place, an imaginative space of play in which mere reality does not constrict the dreamscape. More on this to follow.

1 comment:

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