May 24, 1996

Living in the Body

by Joyce Sutphen


Today's Reading: "Living in the Body" by Joyce Sutphen from STRAIGHT OUT OF VIEW, published by Beacon Press.

Today is Shavuot, the Jewish Pentecost holy day.

The 20th annual Spoleto Festival opens today in Charleston, South Carolina and runs until June 9.

German physicist Gabriel Fahrenheit, inventor of the mercury thermometer, was born in Danzig, Poland in 1686.

The country's first telegraph was sent by Samuel F. B. Morse on this day in 1844.

The Brooklyn Bridge opened to public traffic on this day in 1883.

Dr. Helen Tausiig, founder of Pediatric Cardiology, was born in Cambridge, Massachusetts in 1898.

Author Mikhail A. Sholokhov was born today in 1905.

The Marx Brothers' first movie, "The Coconuts," premiered in New York City in 1929.

Writer Joseph Brodsky was born today in Leningrad, Russia in 1940.

Robert Allen Zimmerman, Bob Dylan, was born in Duluth, Minnesota in 1941.

Be well, do good work, and keep in touch.®




  • “Writers end up writing stories—or rather, stories' shadows—and they're grateful if they can, but it is not enough. Nothing the writer can do is ever enough” —Joy Williams
  • “I want to live other lives. I've never quite believed that one chance is all I get. Writing is my way of making other chances.” —Anne Tyler
  • “Writing is a performance, like singing an aria or dancing a jig” —Stephen Greenblatt
  • “All good writing is swimming under water and holding your breath.” —F. Scott Fitzgerald
  • “Good writing is always about things that are important to you, things that are scary to you, things that eat you up.” —John Edgar Wideman
  • “In certain ways writing is a form of prayer.” —Denise Levertov
  • “Writing is a socially acceptable form of schizophrenia.” —E.L. Doctorow
  • “Writing is like driving at night in the fog. You can only see as far as your headlights, but you can make the whole trip that way.” —E.L. Doctorow
  • “Let's face it, writing is hell.” —William Styron
  • “A writer is someone for whom writing is more difficult than it is for other people.” —Thomas Mann
  • “Writing is 90 percent procrastination: reading magazines, eating cereal out of the box, watching infomercials.” —Paul Rudnick
  • “Writing is a failure. Writing is not only useless, it's spoiled paper.” —Padget Powell
  • “Writing is very hard work and knowing what you're doing the whole time.” —Shelby Foote
  • “I think all writing is a disease. You can't stop it.” —William Carlos Williams
  • “Writing is like getting married. One should never commit oneself until one is amazed at one's luck.” —Iris Murdoch
  • “The less conscious one is of being ‘a writer,’ the better the writing.” —Pico Iyer
  • “Writing is…that oddest of anomalies: an intimate letter to a stranger.” —Pico Iyer
  • “Writing is my dharma.” —Raja Rao
  • “Writing is a combination of intangible creative fantasy and appallingly hard work.” —Anthony Powell
  • “I think writing is, by definition, an optimistic act.” —Michael Cunningham
Current Faves - Learn more about poets featured frequently on the show