Tuesday, February 16, 2016


"The cornerstone of optimism 
is the willingness to believe 
that the inevitable is desirable."

—Andrew Solomon

I saw that quote this morning in a New York Times review of five recently published books on death and dying. The author of the review, Andrew Solomon, found the books to be more uplifting than not. I was struck by the sentiment, in this season in which both my parents passed away, my father twenty years ago this week, and my mother a year ago next month. The quote feels hopeful, even as I weather the stiff winds of memory. Unfortunately, I have no idea where I found that photograph. If you read here and that stunning lonely resilient tree is yours, please enlighten me, and I will happily give credit where it is due. I'm always so taken by that particular burnt red in photographs.


  1. I am an optimist married to a pessimist
    Its hard work x

  2. What a perfect glowing red/orange tree. Did the article mention a book I enjoyed with the title "The End of Your Life Book Club"? A man and his mother read books in her last year. Sort of uplifting.

  3. Oscar Wilde thought differently: "The basis of optimism is sheer terror." But he said a lot of stuff.

  4. Light is pushing darkness away... It feels really optimistically :) I love this quote, it would be great rule of life.

  5. Death is on my mind today as well. I like the suggestion to think of it as desirable. I'm quite sure I'm not there yet, but I will ponder that.

  6. I once coordinated a talk by Andrew Solomon at the NYT. He's an interesting guy. This was after his book "The Noonday Demon" (I think that was the title?) and I haven't read anything by him since. I'll look for this review, though.