A Story About Going Home

…and What That Means

Home is or can be so many different things. It can be a place, a memory, or an idea. Going home is a recurring trope in literature (sometimes done well and sometimes done poorly). Ron Rash’s Saints at the River does a fine job of exploring this trope on a few levels.

Saints at the River by Ron Rash

Maggie Glenn, the protagonist of the novel, returns to her home town to cover a story for the newspaper she works for. Rash uses Maggie’s return to a home she left ten years ago as a means to explore the idea of home and what it means to go home again. For Maggie going home means coming to terms with family and an ex-boyfriend. It also means trying to understand where she stands with the townspeople she grew up with and the town itself. One could also argue that the river at the center of the novel is a symbol for Eden (I’d like to hear what people who read the book think of this) and whether or not a person can ever return to such a paradise once he/she leaves.

Home is so many different things to so many people. Ron Rash’s Saints at the River is a well crafted character study that explores going home and how the place, the memories, and the ideas of home have a lasting impact.

-K-

Saints at the River (2004) by Ron Rash

A person only has so many bottles of bourbon in him/her, why waste any of them drinking over silly shit?

-K-

Authors on Taking a Chance

Five Cents of Wisdom

  • “Don’t let them slow you down. Make your mistakes, take your chances, look silly, but keep on going. Don’t freeze up.” -Thomas Wolfe-
  • “Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.” -Mark Twain-
  • “Only those who will risk going too far can possibly find out how far it is possible to go.” -T.S. Eliot-
“Chess Set”
  • “If you dare nothing, then when the day is over, nothing is all you will have gained.” -Neil Gaiman-
  • “Don’t be too timid and squeamish about your actions. All life is an experiment. The more experiments you make the better.” -Ralph Waldo Emerson-

-K-

The Importance of Taking a Chance

Active Chances vs. Passive Resolutions

The new year usually brings resolutions, both the standard and the exotic. I think we should continually develop our habits, our views, and our lives, but I’m not as keen on the idea of new year resolutions as I used to be. It’s the word ‘resolution’ that bothers me. A resolution can be viewed as a commitment to a thing and/or as the conclusion to a thing but it doesn’t really convey the action of a thing. Resolutions feel passive. Maybe that’s why so many people (myself included before I changed my viewpoint) give up on them. Where resolutions are passive, taking a chance is active.

“Collins Street Mural”

Instead of having resolutions let’s take more chances. Taking a chance raises the stakes and adds a sense of adventure. A chance is the beginning of a thing not just a commitment to a thing. Taking a chance requires both a decision and an action. If we follow through on the action it should lead to a conclusion. Resolutions are easy to give up because we don’t have to invest much to make them. When we take a chance we are putting ourselves out there, we are investing time, effort, resources, or something else that we value. Whether you desire the standard or the exotic don’t resolve to obtain it, take a chance and go for it.

-K-

Website Powered by WordPress.com.

Up ↑