Wendy Blackburn

Wendy Blackburn

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Average rating: 3.90 · 68 ratings · 9 reviews · 1 distinct work · Similar authors
Beachglass: A Novel
3.9 of 5 stars 3.90 avg rating — 68 ratings — published 2006 — 5 editions
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“It was beautiful not despite but because of the friction it has had to endure. It had been thrashed around, but instead of being destroyed, it was improved with every scratch and scrape, sculpted. In fact, the scuffs themselves are what gave it its quiet splendor; they are responsible for turning a simple piece of glass (which could have just as easily been trash) into a gem. It wouldn't be the same without the wear and tear; it wouldn't be something pretty enough to be turned into jewelry if it hadn't been damn near broken. I closed my fist around this tear-shaped gem and thought about my own uneven edges, my own abrasions, and things I have endured that have, instead of breaking me, completed me, prepared me for the next tumble. Its odd beauty was hard-won. It came from reinventing itself. From having risen to the top of the discard pile. Like a phoenix, from victim to victor. (325)”
Wendy Blackburn, Beachglass: A Novel

“Joan had told me a story once about some elephants in captivity somewhere, how as babies they were put into ankle cuffs with chains that were attached to spikes driven into the ground, which they couldn't pull out. They stopped trying within their first years, because it was frustrating and pointless, so they grew up believing that the spikes were stronger than they were. Apparently it never occurred to them to try again later when they were giant adult elephants perfectly capable of yanking the spikes out without even exerting much effort and running free into the jungle, so they wound up staying put next to these tiny little spikes that were now ridiculously weak in comparison to their powerful legs. Joan said we were like that, too. She said we humans often remained bound by old beliefs that had not real power aside from that which we placed upon them. She said our fears were the little tiny spikes we were sill seeing from the vantage point of the baby elephants, but now, my darling, she had told me, now we were mighty beasts who could uproot the spike any old time we were ready. (266)”
Wendy Blackburn, Beachglass: A Novel

“Then she compared the work we did to the peeling of an onion: "It takes a long time, and we peel the layers slowly, incrementally, transparent layers, around and around, peeling until we get to the core," then she smiled, "and there are always tears." (141)”
Wendy Blackburn, Beachglass: A Novel

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