womanly…

I may have mentioned before a little book I love a whole lot by Kathleen Norris called “The Quotidian Mysteries: Laundry, Liturgy and Women’s Work.” If I use the word, “quotidian” in casual conversation with you (and I will) then it’s because of this little book.

I bought it about 12 years ago because I was on a Kathleen Norris kick. I’d just read her book “Dakota” and was picking up everything I could find written by her.

This book was born out of a lecture she’d given in 1998. It’s a slim volume, less than 100 pages, I thought it’d be a quick read…and in some ways it was- I poured over each page, each line, each word…stopping to drink it all in, like a woman lost in the desert suddenly immersed in water.

I won’t go into it much seeing as it’s poetry tuesday and all but suffice it to say that I now keep a number of copies of this book on hand at my house. I give it out to women who cross my path as much as I’m able. It’s a beauty.

The reason I bring it up today is that Kathleen Norris weaves poetry into this lovely book with such care it’s astounding. I was most struck by a poem she’d written entitled, “Housecleaning.” I won’t quote the poem in its entirety here but give you just a small sampling…my favorite part.

“I could use some sleep.
What I do must be done
each day, in every season,
like liturgy. I pray
to Mary Magdalene, who kept seven
demons,
one for each day of the week.
How practical; how womanly.”

-Kathleen Norris “Housecleaning”

You need this book so buy it, alright? (Or see me in person and I’ll gift it to you…)

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