Taos is very beautiful, infused with an ancient Indian heritage and the spirits of 20th century writers & artists. In an Anglo-centric literary fashion it was always DH Lawrence who drew me there. On my recent visit I was therefore staying at the Mabel Dodge Luhan House……….

Mabel Dodge Luhan committed huge amounts of time to persuading Lawrence (and other writers, artists and thinkers) to go to Taos; when he did they had a very stormy relationship. The house is now an inn and hosts writers and writing workshops (which gives me an idea for next year…..).

I was also appropriately reading Joseph Foster’s D.H.Lawrence in Taos which gives an interesting perspective from someone who knew, observed and admired him but was not blind to his peculiarities.

It was a library book which, as with second hand books, sometimes brings you more than just the author’s words, more often an added bonus than an irritation, wouldn’t you say?

On page 57 the occasional pencil underlinings suddenly become personal, become words, develop character. I reproduce here the underlining and  the pencil margin notes which make a great Journal Prompt.

Foster wrote:

What does one expect of a great man, such as Lawrence in one’s life?

Perhaps only contact. Reassurance that because of him life is worthwhile. Lawrence was a presence in our lives even before we met him. Someone who stirred the highest things in us. (p57)

Someone underlined the last sentence above and wrote in the margin:

Who stirs the highest things in you? what?

Taos Pueblo
Taos Pueblo

I would describe this as “A Found Journal Prompt”.

And finally….

Do you like to read geographically relevant books? What combinations of place & book have you found?

My next trip is to Alaska – any reading suggestions?

Published by Kate Thompson

Kate Thompson, MA, CJT is a BACP (British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy) senior accredited Supervisor & Counsellor who trained in London and at The Center for Journal Therapy, Denver, Colorado after a first degree in English Literature at the University of Cambridge, UK. She is an existential therapist who works with writing as part of her pratice.

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