attentionné
coin du feu

songe

Songe
Our totally off-topic photo-du-jour: "Italian Wine Cooler". Picture taken in Alba, if I remember correctly. Note: no need to edit the photo captions. Photos will  not appear with the chapters.

Songe
 
(sohnzh)

noun, masculine 

   dream
          


A Restless Writer Dreams
When William Faulkner, famous American novelist, poet and Nobel Laureate, came to stay with us here at the farm, I offered him a fold-out cot.

I could have offered him our bed,
but, you know,
he got the other instead.

As for my lack of fuss
(no guest towel, no pillow, no spare toothbrush),
who knew I was hosting a literature buff?

That's when it finally dawned on me
that there, in a cap and a long white nightie,
was a 20th Century celebrity!

Oh Glory be, there were we...
Faulkner, yours truly
and several bottles of eau-de-vie.

"Your imagination is good," said he....
 
"But we haven't got all night,
so pull up a chair
and I'll teach you to write!"

That's when so many tablets,
not of stone...
but of wood chips,


appeared out of nowhere
to receive the writer's
savoir-faire.

Then, like Moses channeling words from above,
Faulkner wrote down truths on how to write without fear—
and always with love!

And though his words were addressed to a restless writer, 
they are dear to everyman—
so get out your highlighter!

Here is the wisdom that the prize-winning author wrote down,
on wood chips, no less,
for there wasn't any holy stone lying around!

He said:

"(one)...must teach himself that the basest of all things is to be afraid; and, teaching himself that, forget it forever, leaving no room in his workshop [âme*] for anything but the old verities and truths of the heart..." He went on to say that it is a human "...privilege to help man endure by lifting his heart, by reminding him of the courage and honor and hope and pride and compassion and pity and sacrifice which have been the glory of his past."


Fast, fast, fast...
I copied down the writer's words
but the clarity of my dream wouldn't last.

By the time I awoke,
my memory bank
was flat broke.

I was still the restless writer that I had always been,
without any special favors
from the man with the golden pen.

                               *     *     *

Post note: While the dream, above, was vividly real, the two excerpts, in the penultimate paragraph above, were taken from William Faulkner's acceptance speech for the 1949 Nobel Prize in Literature.


French Vocabulary

le lit = bed

l'eau-de-vie
(f) = brandy

le savoir-faire = know-how, expertise

l'âme (f) = soul

 

====Note: any text from here, on, will not be included in the book.=====

Your edits here, please!

Update! The format of the above story was radically changed (see the previous version at the end of this post!), following Nancy's helpful suggestion (see comments box). That said, I am not sure about including this story in the book compilation. Please don't be shy, send me your thoughts.

And thank you for continuing to search this story for any typos or blips or inconsistencies in formatting. I appreciate your efforts! Click here to submit corrections.

 

===And text beyond this point will not appear in the book===

If you love writing and France you may enjoy these books: A Writers Paris: A Guided Journey For The Creative Soul & Literary Paris: A Guide


:: Audio File ::
Listen to Jean-Marc pronounce these French words:
Songe. L'espérance est le songe d'un homme éveillé.
Download songe.mp3
Download songe.wav

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Related Terms & Expressions:
  en songe = in a dream
  faire un songe = to have a dream
  un songe-creux = a visionary
  songer = to dream
  la songerie = reverie
  songeur, songeuse = pensive (adj.); dreamer (noun)

 Here is the previous version of the story

A Restless Writer Dreams
When William Faulkner, famous American novelist, poet and Nobel Laureate, came to stay with us here at the grape farm, I offered him a fold-out cot. I could have offered him our bed, but, you know, he got the other instead.

As for my lack of fuss (not a guest towel, pillow or spare toothbrush), who knew I was housing a literature buff? That's when it finally dawned on me that there, in a cap and long white nightie, was a 20th century celebrity!

Oh Glory be, there were we...
Faulkner, yours truly ...and several bottles of eau-de-vie.
(Thank God neither of us was tipsy!)

"Your imagination is good," said he. But we haven't got all night, so, if you like, pull up a chair and I'll teach you to write!

That's when so many tablets, not of stone but of wood chips, 
appeared out of nowhere to receive the writer's savoir-faire.
Then, like Moses channeling words from above,
Faulkner wrote down truths on how to write without fear—
and always with love!

And while his words were addressed to a restless writer, they are dear to everyman—so get out your highlighter! 

Here is the wisdom that the prize-winning author wrote down, on wood chips, no less, for there wasn't any holy stone lying around. He said:

"(one)...must teach himself that the basest of all things is to be afraid; and, teaching himself that, forget it forever, leaving no room in his workshop [âme*] for anything but the old verities and truths of the heart..." He went on to say that it is a human "...privilege to help man endure by lifting his heart, by reminding him of the courage and honor and hope and pride and compassion and pity and sacrifice which have been the glory of his past."


Fast, fast, fast... I copied down the writer's words but the clarity of my dream wouldn't last. By the time I awoke, my memory bank was flat broke. I was still the restless writer that I had always been, without any special favors from the man with the golden pen.

In booksThe Bilingual Edge: Why, When, and How to Teach Your Child a Second Language 

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