It's rare for me to get a question I haven't heard at a book event or lecture. But last week, someone asked what she might see on top of my desk and I was delighted to have a non-boring answer. Because in addition to the piles of paper (fairly neat), tape dispenser, pencil cup, computer gear and other uninteresting accoutrement, there's a kind of inspirational beauty altar. Okay maybe not so beautiful to you, but meaningful to me.
The giraffe (out of a Celestial Seasonings Tea Box) is a memorial to my late father, who said he had been one in a previous life. The wooden "A" is from Toronto and also reminds me of my dad, who was a Linotype compositor.
The shell is from South Africa, a trip that changed the way I view the world. There's a little rock in front of the statuette, which I picked up near Atlit, the setting for Day After Night, my latest novel.
The bit of driftwood with pebbles and words attached was a gift from my friend, artist Joel Moskowitz; the words are five lines of lyrics I wrote for music by my friend Bert Seager; it's a kind of three-dimensional "poem" and I just love it.http://cdbaby.com/cd/bertseager3
Finally, the statuette, which came from a gift shop in the Grand Canyon with the following explanation: "The Anasazi tradition of working with clay and telling stories has merged into a modern art form of STORYTELLER pottery dolls.. The figurine most often depicts a grandparent who gathers his/her grandchildren around to play the drum, sing songs and tell stories of their heritage and traditions."
What's on your desktop?