I didn’t think much of the novel, Norwegian Wood by Haruki Murakami while I was reading it. But just like the Beatles song of the same name, that became a maddening earworm for weeks after hearing it recently, the story keeps creeping into my thoughts and coloring my perspective of life.
Life is dark and sad and fraught with uncertainty, and yet buried in all of that sadness are bits of light and delight – like tasting the fruit of a Peruvian Apple Cactus that seems at first to be tasteless, but suddenly delights your mouth with an irresistible crystalline popping sensation.
Uncovering these hidden gems in a bleak life is the raison d’être of artists. We spend our lives with imaginary magnifying glasses extended, searching for the ubiquitous gems hidden in plain sight. That moment when a reader exclaims, “Ah yes, I’ve had that feeling!” or, “I never thought about it in this way until I read what you wrote,” is when I feel that I have lived with a purpose. [Read more…]