Slow living

The Sunday Salon: Slow is Beautiful, A Guest Post by Barbara Richardson

The Sunday Salon is  about gathering together to talk about all things bookish, and I’m pleased to have a visitor this Sunday to do just that. 

Settle in, let me pour you some tea or coffee, and say hello to Barbara Richardson, whose novel Tributary was one of the books I thoroughly enjoyed during My Summer of Reading Historically. 

Slow is Beautiful

I remember a Rilke quote, an insight from that wise and sensitive poet, suggesting life is a closed envelope and nearly all of us just pass the envelope along to the next generation. Few open it. Few even try. Almost no one realizes the envelope is addressed to them. To us. To you.

That letter from the universe waits in your hands. You are the recipient. The mystery, of course, is how to open the envelope. Every day. Every minute of every day.

I know one thing that will raise your odds: slow down. I learned this from my own speedball past. I have actually been called “Speedball” by a loved one. And, by a co-worker, “a squirrel on crack.” Being speedy meant I could deliver, oh, a few thousand unopened envelopes a day and still feel ridiculously disconnected from my life.

E. M. Forster, another wise sensitive writer, says, “Only connect.”

When I move slowly through my life, I recognize, “I am the envelope.” The objective of my days is to open and see and receive. If you find yourself unhappy and unfulfilled, try slowing down and savoring. Honestly, the human system is made for that. You’ll be good at it. When you try.

By the end of my new novel Tributary, my heroine Clair Martin receives and opens her life letter. What is inside that letter? I hope you’ll go with Clair on the journey to find out.

Speed gets you nowhere quickly. Please slow down. Be an elephant. Spray sun-warmed water on your dry back. Roll in the dust, remembering your eternal connectedness.

There IS no time like the present. And Elephants never forget.

I couldn’t agree more, Barbara. Life is best lived when savored slowly and mindfully. The modern world doesn’t make that easy for us, so thank you for this thoughtful reminder.  And for something to enjoy from the kitchen, visit Barbara’s blog to get Clair Martin’s yummy recipe for Clair’s Windfall Applesauce.