Sunday, July 1, 2007

"I think maybe it had something to do with all that sky."

Elizabeth Gilbert on Mildred Kalish's memoir Little Heathens:

I think maybe it had something to do with all that sky. Having lived a disproportionate sum of her childhood outdoors, Kalish was greatly overexposed to “the high blue sky” of Iowa and all that blue oxygen and soaring heavenly vaulting seems to have made her a little intoxicated. But she was also dosed by more than her share of barefoot expeditions over “the astonishingly thick green grass that carpets the woods in Iowa.” She gets almost woozy remembering the sight and scent of the “giant pink bouquet” that arrived every spring when the farm’s one crab apple tree climaxed into bloom. And Kalish swears that the privilege of inhaling “the sweet fragrance emanating from the clean body of a colt, calf, lamb, puppy or kitten that had been sleeping on the grass and warmed by the sun” is one of life’s great “pagan pleasures.”
Shhh. Don't tell anybody, but Iowa is still a beautiful and wonderful place, and I find its high blue sky landscapes intoxicating to this day. (That's why they're the dominant feature of my recent home movie.)

I've got to read Kalish's book.

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