When life gets you down try looking at what others are going through. You may realize that your troubles are minuscule compared to theirs. Reading the memoir When Breath Becomes Air by Paul Kalanithi made me sad, but also gave food for thought on life and how precious each day is.
Winner of the 2013 Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award. The story is told by an elderly unnamed man who was a pitcher for the minor league baseball team Racine Robins during the Great Depression. The tight-knit team played in cities all around the Great Lakes states and was committed to the cause of helping the poor and laboring class. The team was happy with traveling in their beat-up bus, eating sandwiches on the road, and playing for enthusiastic crowds who received a portion of the money from the gate for soup kitchens and strikers.
Our current display at the library features award-winning fiction and nonfiction books. Check it out. One of the award-winning authors on display is Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn who received the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1970. I have read and re-read his book One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich which is based on Solzhenitsyn’s experiences in a Soviet labor camp. This book made an impression on me. It is the story of an ordinary Russian, Shukov (Ivan Denisovich), who is in a prison labor camp in Siberia in January, 1951.
Gilead is a quiet, reflective book about things of the heart and spirit—forgiveness and the relationship between father and son. John Ames is an elderly pastor in the small town of Gilead, Iowa in the 1950s. He had a son late in life and is writing down his thoughts and memories for his son so that his son will know about his family and heritage. Pastor Ames is the grandson and son of preachers. His grandfather had been a fiery abolitionist preacher before the Civil War and his father a pacifist preacher. His best friend is Robert Boughton, also a pastor in Gilead.
The Fond du Lac Public Library’s annual Fond du Lac Reads celebration in October focused on the novel, Wingshooters, by Nina Revoyr. During the month, the community was invited to “write” poems in the library’s Book Spine Poetry Contest – Talking About Tolerance. Poems were written using the words on the spines of books, movies or CDs.
On Wednesday, Mary Wehner and Paula Sergi of the Foot of the Lake Poetry Collective judged the entries and awarded first, second and third place prizes.