A fabulous memoir by Isabel Allende. I read it a couple of years ago, but turned back to its pages last night for some reason. I won’t even attempt to say anything that Allende can’t say better herself. Some of my favorite passages:
Never do harm, and wherever possible do good.
All the air blew out of our rage in an instant, and deep in our bones we felt a grief as vast as the Pacific Ocean, a pain we hadn’t wanted to admit out of pure and simple pride.
What does imagination feed on, anyway? In my experience, on memories, the vast world, the people I know, and also the persons and voices I carry within to help me on the journey of living and writing. My grandmother used to say that space is filled with presences, of what has been, is, and will be.
Love is a lightning bolt that strikes suddenly, changing us.
The entire tribe was there to celebrate her, and once more I found that in an emergency you toss overboard the things that are not essential, that is, nearly everything. In the end, after a thorough lightening of loads and taking account, it turns out that the one thing that’s left is love.
And my favorite:
I didn’t know then that sadness is never entirely gone; it lives on forever just below the skin. Without it I wouldn’t be who I am, or be able to recognize myself in the mirror.