Guest Post, Dara Wier: On and During and While and After

The New Novel,  Winslow Homer, 1877ON AND DURING AND WHILE AND AFTER READING BECAUSE OF READING FOR READING’S SAKE AND FOR OURS

 

Because we crave to use those parts of us by which we read.

We read for our brains to do what they can.

We read so that marks make themselves into what they were not before we were reading them.

We read for everyone’s sake.

We read while we think we are reading and we are not.

We read backwards and forwards and up and down. We read into over and above.

We think we are reading and maybe we are.

We read because it is the only way into some things.

We read so as to know some things we couldn’t know otherwise.

We read for the sake of leaving ourselves behind.

For the sake of taking leave of our senses.

We read for god’s sake.

We read in a boat.

We read in a chair.

We read with no comprehension.

We read what we can’t understand because to learn to live with not understanding is one of the best things we can do for ourselves.

It astonishes us.

We read past ourselves.

We read for someone we love more than we love ourselves.

We read because lonesome requires companions.

We read because to be solitary requires attention.

We read because we are in love.

We read before we sleep.

We read by flashlight and moonlight, in sunlight, by torch and by firelight.

We read at the speed of sound.

We read at lightning speed.

We read because we are alive.

We read outloud in unison but I hate that.

We read because there are too many of us around.

We read because there is no one else around.

We read to be alone.

We make sense of what it is we are doing when we are reading.

We understand some of what we read.

I think to read and read to breathe.

We hope to get something out of what we read.

People ask us when you are reading what do you take away.

We read to think about what it is there to be read.

To think what reading can do is lead me through away from what was on my mind.

To read beyond what my mind was already thinking.

We get it in bits and pieces, what we read.

We read because to read is to be in touch with what is other than us.

We read to forget, to remember, to forget, to remember, to forget.

We remember who it was we first saw read.

We remember who it was who first read to us.

We remember a book someone gave us to read.

Who read to us memorably.

We read to know more or less what has come to or leaves us.

We read to know how we don’t know, can’t know, won’t know.

We read to know what we shouldn’t know.

We read to know how much.

To know how many and how few.

We read past what’s there.

We read to know what’s no longer there.

We read into something because we are human.

We read as ourselves and not as anyone else.

We read at varying speeds.

We read at the speed of light.

We read here to read there, to be reading and not disappearing.

We read for the sake of our ancestors.

We read for the sake of our children.

We are read to if we are lucky before we can make sense of the marks of the words on a page, on a wall, on a board, on the sky, in water, in smoke, in air.

We read something that is burning away in a fire.

We read what’s dissolving in water.

We read in water.

While we’re falling asleep we are reading.

We read in abject humility with knowledge of our lack of knowing much about what we are reading.

We read while we know we can never and never will read enough.

We read some more and we begin to want to know what happens next.

We read because reading uses our brains for something it is good at doing.

We read more because it adds to our understanding something we had not before known or understood.

We have endless understandings of understanding.

We read with trepidation. We read with caution. We read with fear.

We read as skeptics, as if reading were a competition.

We read as the faithful, as if our lives depended on what we are reading.

Some times what we are reading determines the rest of our lives.

With abandon we lose ourselves in what we read.

We read counter-intuitively.

We read respectfully, gratefully, introspectively, innocently.

We read so thoroughly, we are so thoroughly reading we forget where we are and what it is we are doing.

We read ourselves into forgetting ourselves. We forget who we are.

We stop reading and no longer know who we are.

We look up from reading and recognize nothing.

We read with pity for our kind.

We read while we are 30,000 feet above ground.

We read beneath sea level.

We read on horseback.

We read while we speed at speeds approaching the speed of sound.

We read while someone dies under the same roof sheltering our reading.

We think we had not known something before.

We read because without reading words would not have so much to do.

We read because words are all around us and let us read them.

We read because sometimes when we read we are not being stupid any more.

We read today to live tomorrow.

We read because someone gives us something to read.

We read because someone wrote what we’re reading.

We read because someone says here read this.

We read because we see someone else reading.

We read because we want to read what someone else says they are reading.

We read what someone else reads to feel our mind is feeling something like their mind is feeling. Or we pretend it might be.

We read in the mirror.

We read on a train.

We read on a ferry.

We read for money. We read for time. We read for love.

We read by fire. We read by flame and flare. We read by what our eyes and fingers provide.

Because we can we read what we’ve provided for reading’s sake.

And sometimes something comes of it. We read from when we can to when we no longer can. And after that someone else reads where we left off.

Dara Wier

Dara Wier's most recent book is YOU GOOD THING from Wave Books, 2013, a BELIEVER'S readers book choice for 2014.Her previous books include REVERSE RAPTURE (Poetry Book of the Year, American Poetry Center, San Francisco St. University, 2009), REMNANTS OF HANNAH, VOYAGES IN ENGLISH and BLUE FOR THE PLOUGH.She writes a sporadic blog for Flying Object, flying-object.org/, a community arts space and project in Hadley, Massachusetts, and she leads workshops and seminars for the University of Massachusetts Amherst MFA for Poets and Writers.

Latest posts by Dara Wier (see all)

2 thoughts on “Guest Post, Dara Wier: On and During and While and After

  • October 19, 2014 at 5:00 pm
    Permalink

    A few of my favorite lines:

    “We read outloud in unison but I hate that.”

    “We read because sometimes when we read we are not being stupid any more.”

    “We read what someone else reads to feel our mind is feeling something like their mind is feeling. Or we pretend it might be.”

    Wonderful piece.

    Reply
  • October 19, 2014 at 11:10 pm
    Permalink

    I love when writing is structured like this. I love playing with prose and for trying new things, but this is awesome. I really enjoyed how you approach me as the reader and you take control of my thoughts, although you unify us as the same time. You have quite the charming control here!

    Reply

Leave a Reply