Nov. 10, 1996

Rumors from an Aeolian Harp

by Henry David Thoreau

SUNDAY 11/10

Today's Reading:"Rumors from an Aeolian Harp" by Henry David Thoreau.

It was on this day in 1975 that the ore carrier EDMUND FITZGERALD broke in two and sank during a November gale on Lake Superior, drowning all 29 crew members. This evening in Two Harbors, Minnesota, a special memorial beacon lighting will take place to honor the FITZGERALD and its crew.

The children's television program SESAME STREET debuted on PBS in 1969.

Poet and critic Karl Shapiro was born in Baltimore, Maryland, in 1913.

The first motorcycle trip was made on this day in 1885 in Germany when Paul Daimler rode for six miles. The motorcycle was intended only for the purpose of testing his newly developed petrol engine.

It's the birthday in Dublin, 1879, of Irish nationalist and poet Patrick Henry Pearse. He wrote in Gaelic to promote the language, helped to plan the Easter Uprising of 1916, was commander-in-chief of Irish forces during the revolt, and became the first president of the provisional government. He was executed by the British on 3 May 1916.

Martin Luther, the Augustinian monk who started the Reformation, was born on this day in Eisleben, Saxony, 1483.

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
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