There is something peaceful in reading the perspectives of a successful, intellectual, independent, and reflexive woman writing about what it is like to be entering the last chapters of ones life. She can be blunt and politically incorrect about relationships (men are boring), and she can be lyrical about the last decades of life (The piercing sense of last time adds intensity, while the possibility of again is never quite effaced.). She offers the wisdom of perspective (There is no commitment that does not bring with it its own tensions, and its own ambivalences.).
I was drawn to her notes about the dialectical tension revolving around the need for being alone and the need for being connected (Those who seek solitude often mistake it, I suspect. They want it because they can leave it, because it is not their whole destiny.).
I, too, hope to have the freedom, whimsy, and incorrigibility to face my last gift of time whenever that may be.
A short, delightful read.
thought-provoking--Heilbrun is a pioneer/role-model for academic (and other!) women
From the lady who writes everything beautifully.
When she was young, distinguished author and critic Carolyn Heilbrun solemnly vowed to end her life when she turned seventy. But on the advent of that fateful birthday, she realized that her golden years had been full of unforeseen pleasures. Now, the astute and ever-insightful Heilbrun muses on the emotional and intellectual insights that brought her "to choose each day for now, to live." There are reflections on her new house and her sturdy, comfortable marriage; sweet solitude; the fascination with e-mail; and the joy of discovering unexpected friends.