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Kayak Morning: Reflections on Love, Grief, and Small Boats Paperback – Deckle Edge, January 3, 2012
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From the Back Cover
From Roger Rosenblatt, author of the bestsellers Making Toast and Unless It Moves the Human Heart, comes a moving meditation on the passages of grief, the solace of solitude, and the redemptive power of love
In Making Toast, Roger Rosenblatt shared the story of his family in the days and months after the death of his thirty-eight-year-old daughter, Amy. Now, in Kayak Morning, he offers a personal meditation on grief itself. “Everybody grieves,” he writes. From that terse, melancholy observation emerges a work of art that addresses the universal experience of loss.
On a quiet Sunday morning, two and a half years after Amy’s death, Roger heads out in his kayak. He observes,“You can’t always make your way in the world by moving up. Or down, for that matter. Boats move laterally on water, which levels everything. It is one of the two great levelers.” Part elegy, part quest, Kayak Morning explores Roger’s years as a journalist, the comforts of literature, and the value of solitude, poignantly reminding us that grief is not apart from life but encompasses it. In recalling to us what we have lost, grief by necessity resurrects what we have had.
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Top Customer Reviews
Being out on the water is not an escape from grief but another opportunity to remember his daughter and....at least from this reader's perspective...to explore the depths of his loss while immersed in the natural world.
After his daughter's death, Rosenblatt believed that if he just " got on with it" the pain would somehow diminish. But it did not. So Rosenblattt seeks to transform his grief while kayaking.
Along the way, he is learning the difference between mourning, supported by others, and grieving ...alone. They may overlap. But mourning and grief are not the same.
The kayaking seems to help put everything into a deeper perspective. Meanwhile, Rosenblatt talks to Amy, recalls times they'd shared, lessons he learned from her. She is never far from his thoughts.
Scattered throughout the book are references and quotes from writers such as Melville and Wordsworth. In this way, Rosenblatt expands the whole grief process into more than a personal, individual one. He draws upon the varied perspectives of others.
But at the heart of Kayak Morning is Rosenblatt's ongoing struggle to come to terms with his loss. And he begins to see some rays of hope- or perhaps they are best described as moments of comfort. Recalling how much love his daughter shared with so many, he wonders if perhaps love can - in a way - conquer death. He carries his daughter's love with him and she "lives in his love".
So what does he conclude as the book comes to an end? How is he different? Begin this book, pause now and then to think about the words Rosenblatt writes so eloquently and you may well find comfort in sharing the journey with this author. I know I did as may others who have suffered the loss of someone dearly loved - and deeply missed. And I'll leave it to you to discover what the author concludes about his own loss.
"When you love someone every moment is shadowed by the fear of loss. Then loss occurs, and you feel more love than ever. The more you loved, more you feel the loss. Depression, then, may be seen as the strongest expression of love. That's where logic gets you."
Anyone who's ever paddled a kayak, or who's experience a grievous loss, will, I think, find themselves becoming an invisible passenger on Rosenblatt's Kayak.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This is a book about healing after a great loss.Read more