May 10, 2017 by femvestige
For this week’s #femwritquotes feature, I have dived into another of one of my favorite books. One of my favorite genres to read is dystopian. Not because I a morbid fascination with all the different ways we can come up with the end of the world, but because I am fascinated at how humans bounce back. I love reading how people come together in the face of disaster, be that environmental/nature, political/religious, or extra-terrestrial.
Emily St. John Mandel’s book Station Eleven hit all my happy spots for excellent reading material: dystopian, Shakesperian, music, comic book, nerd references, changing POV’s, seamless interweaving through time, poetic prose language, etc. Station Eleven follows the lives of several interesting characters – primarily that of a young woman in a traveling Shakespearian acting company and orchestra in the future world of Chicago and the life of an aging actor and all the people in his life. The story weaves back and forth at the outbreak of a devastating flu virus and 20 years later in the aftermath.
The language and characters in Mandel’s book are so vibrant and colorful that it almost reads like poetry and art. Here is the quote I want to share with you:
“But these thoughts broke apart in his head and were replaced by strange fragments: This is my soul and the world unwinding, this is my heart in the still winter air.”
Even without the context of where these words come from, the imagery this quote provokes for me is that of exposure and total vulnerability. “This is my soul and the world unwinding…” As a person who has experienced a lot of transition in my life lately, this wording speaks to me. Living in a country where there is much confusion, fear, and suffering, this wording speaks to me. How many people have experienced their world unwinding? How do we deal with it?
“This is my heart in the still winter air.” To me, this can speak to me in two ways – one of despair, longing, and sadness – and one of hope, beauty, and an emotional vulnerability that is so loving and desperate that we hold our breaths. Despite the world unwinding, I am here baring my soul and heart to the elements. It’s a beautiful thing, to be vulnerable and open. This quote makes me feel like I’m allowed to bare my soul, regardless of whatever path we pursue or how our world is unwinding around us.
Feel free to share the image below if this quote speaks to you in any way. Let me know in the comments what your thoughts are! Do you find beauty in this quote or sadness?