The Journey is the Point

All the way from South Africa comes an essay from a writer who once took a class with me. She tells of her own creative journey, often one of fits and starts, with breaks necessitated by life.

Marianne Saddington is a paper artist and a painter, a poet and an essayist. She writes of a process that is often tentative and incremental, with a good measure of self-doubt mixed in and with side trips along the way. She writes of moving to the country and then to the Little Karoo, two hours from Cape Town, surrounded by mountains. Place and its voices seem to create certain echoes in her writing mind, even as she’s seeking to define herself.

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She writes of meeting online an American woman who once lived in South Africa, and then of meeting her in person years later:

Although Joyce and I had corresponded for 14 years, this was the first time we met in person. When I looked into her brown eyes and gave her a hug, my eyes misted and my throat swelled. It was like finding a long-lost sister. Similarly with other members. I knew their writing “voices” on the page, but not their real voices, accents or physical presence. It was very moving.

Sometimes, as with travel, the journey is the whole point. Sometimes you have to stop and express gratitude for the people who walk this road with you.

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