Thursday, June 13, 2019

“STOP Eating the White Man’s Food”







Native-American Warrior Dance


I’m quoting. I’m quoting a Native-American young man who, upon visiting his cousin, saw that his cousin was suffering: he was overweight, sluggish, sick, depressed and feeling hopeless. He told his cousin, “You gotta stop eating the white man’s food! I did, and I got my life together. I’m feeling a lot better, clearer, stronger, more alive.”

No one should eat the White Man’s Food. What is the white man’s food? Red meat, processed meats, sugar drinks, artificial foods, fast foods, white flour baked goods, non-organic dairy, GMOs, chemicals, dyes, preservatives, trans fats, added salts and sugars.

I read this young man’s story in a comment. I believe in comments. Real ones, that is, not those turds dropped by trolls. Real, serious comments from real people who know something. Often, the people commenting know more than the author of the article itself. I call it “word-on-the-street,” to quote Christopher Walken in Suicide Kings, word-on-the-street is “Solid!”

I believe this young man’s story.

The reason I believe him is because I have not eaten the white man’s food for over 40 years. I’ve been macrobiotic for 45 years and counting. My diet is based on brown rice and vegetables with some fish, chicken and organic eggs. I’m not that strict, really. I enjoy a little scotch in the evenings, and a small dish of frozen yogurt. But, I am 67 years old, not on any medications, and doing pretty well.

Back to the Native-American man. What did he advise his cousin to eat? Whole grains, beans, vegetables, lots of vegetables, foods we can actually get, unlike the buffalo, which we nearly destroyed. If anyone wanted to eat buffalo, please remember you must consider what the buffalo is eating and where you live. Only people who live out of doors, in buffalo country, where the buffalo graze on clean land may eat buffalo. Wild game is not desirable unless you are living wild; it is very hard to balance game with our modern lifestyle, which tends to be on hardscape, streets, sidewalks, houses. This hardscape, and the stress of modern life, are why we are attracted to so much sugar - however, sugar kills.

Besides the buffalo, we have also nearly destroyed the corn, another traditional Native-American food. Almost all corn (and also soybeans) in the United States is Genetically Modified. Be very careful to eat only organic corn and soybeans!

I remember, and I have not been able to find him, another young man, not Native-American, who was, years ago, trying to help the Native-Americans to regain their native foods, especially beans which can be obtained or grown relatively easily. But, we live in the modern world, and people can now go to almost any store or natural foods co-op to buy good quality beans, whole grains and vegetables. I remember this young man’s open hand holding pinto beans, a bean marked with the reddish-brown spots of a pinto horse. I eat pinto beans, they’re sweet and creamy, very delicious.

I say white man’s food, but many African-Americans have also forgotten their traditional foods. They have turned to fast foods as a staple diet or to regular, American fare. However, African-American food is fantastically delicious! I grew up Italian, and very early got the impression that people who have suffered war or other deprivation, like slavery, have learned how to forage and make good food out of what other, more privileged people, consider weeds or undesirable parts of the animal. I grew up eating tripe and chicken feet and gizzards and dandelion greens, not necessarily in the same dish, but I was no stranger to native grasses and parts of the animal most cooks throw out. Maybe I never really ate the white man’s food. My mother railed, “Don’t eat anything from a factory!” She picked dandelion greens in vacant lots while the neighbors laughed at her. 

Native-Americans were taken from their native lands and marched to arid, hostile land over hundreds of miles along the Trail of Tears. Many died or sickened, and when they arrived, they had nothing. They were not allowed to leave the reservations or to get jobs. They were not allowed to speak in their native languages or teach their children the native dances. Have things changed? Yes and no. Native-Americans can now move freely, but, in this modern day, there are still more dead and missing among our Native-Americans than any other group. 

Whole grains cost very little and are simple to cook. Brown rice triples in volume when cooked and lasts for days in a bowl win the counter, covered with a sushi mat. An easy brown rice recipe follows this post, as does a basic recipe for beans, and a nutritious condiment called gomasio, made from roasted sesame seeds and sea salt to sprinkle on your cooked brown rice. 

I say white man’s food, but there’s no reason anyone should eat any of its poison. It’s not about race anyway, it’s about power. Power to the people. Take back your traditional foods. Take back your power! Everyone should learn to cook for themselves and their families. It’s the only way back to health. Remember.



Brown Rice

2 cups short grain brown rice (This is simply the best, highest quality brown rice.  Short grain is the strongest brown rice, good for strengthening our conditions,)

3 cups spring water (1 1/2 cups water to each cup of brown rice)

pinch sea salt


Wash brown rice in a strainer.  Put clean rice into a pan with a good strong base, like a Revereware pan because it will need to simmer for 45 minutes and you don't want the bottom to burn.

Measure 3 cups spring water, pour into pan with washed rice. 

Place pan on stove, turn flame up high until water boils, then turn down flame immediately until rice is gently simmering.  Then, cover tightly and let simmer for 45 minutes.

When you remove the cover, your rice should be fluffy and separated, perhaps slightly stuck to the bottom.  This is okay.  If "bottom rice" is golden in color, toasty looking, it is very delicious and tastes great added to your miso soup!

Don't worry if your brown rice isn't perfect on your first try!  Many people have to make several pots before they get it right!  Even if it's wrong, too mushy (Next time add a little less water!) too dry (Next time add a little more water!) you can eat the rice and it tastes great!


Beans

1 cup beans

2-3 cups water

Small piece of kombu sea vegetable (available at Whole Foods or Eden Foods online) Kombu is not necessary to cook beans, but it does help soften the beans and eliminates gas from the bean)

Wash beans in a strainer, you can work the beans a little with your hands to begin the softening process.

Place beans in pan, water to cover. Bring to a boil, simmer for 1-2 hours if using dry beans. Skim the foam from the top to eliminate gas from the beans.

You may also buy canned beans from a trustworthy source such as Whole Foods or Eden Foods. (I cannot recommend Goya beans as they are not organic and contain a lot of salt.) When I cook with canned beans, I add chopped onion and garlic sautéed in olive oil. Yum!


Gomasio

One quarter cup of unhulled sesame seeds contains 35% of our required calcium for the day.

To make gomasio, please wash about two cups of unhulled sesame seeds in a fine strainer until the water runs clear. Then, drain the water carefully by tilting the strainer and tossing the seeds from side to side in the strainer. You may let the strainer sit on a clean towel for a few minutes, occasionally tilting it to get more water out.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. When the seeds are almost dry, or completely dry, place them in a shallow glass pan in a 350 degree oven, turning them with a wooden spoon every 10 minutes or so. Seeds are done when they are a golden brown. Your kitchen will also be infused with a delicious aroma of roasted nuts!

Place hot seeds into a wooden bowl. To make gomasio, place approximately 3 TBS of sea salt to 2 cups seeds into a suribachi bowl or mortar bowl. If you don’t have either of these, you may use an ordinary wooden bowl. Crush the sea salt with a spiraling motion of the pestle. When sea salt is fine, add the seeds and crush them into the sea salt with a spiraling motion. Do not crush all the seeds, leave some whole for more flavor. 

You may use hot seeds for gomasio making, but let the gomasio cool before placing it into a glass jar for storage. If you wish to save some of the seeds for adding to salads, breads, cookies, etc., put some aside in a wooden bowl and let cool, stirring occasionally to speed up the process. Store these in a glass jar for future use.

Like any other time consuming process in the kitchen, gomasio making may be done efficiently around other activities during the day, and will not seem to take up much time as soon as you have a method down. Gomasio usually lasts a few weeks. Once you have tasted good homemade gomasio, you’ll always want some around!


©Patricia Goodwin, 2019

Patricia Goodwin is the author of When Two Women Die, about Marblehead legends and true crime and its sequel, Dreamwater, about the Salem witch trials and the vicious 11-year-old pirate Ned Low. Holy Days is her third novel, about the sexual, psychological seduction of Gloria Wisher and her subsequent transformation. Her newest poetry books are Telling Time By Apples, And Other Poems About Life On The Remnants of Olde Humphrey Farme, illustrated by the author, and Java Love: Poems of a Coffeehouse. Patricia has enjoyed the health and well-being of the macrobiotic diet for over 40 years. She has written many articles about health and the dangers of GMOs.





Wednesday, May 22, 2019

Meeting Gloria Steinem




Meeting Gloria Steinem At Boston University

A few years ago, I had the honor of meeting one of our culture’s most important feminist icons, Gloria Steinem at the Boston University Barnes & Noble Lecture Series where she was promoting the book ENSLAVED, edited by Jesse Sage and Liora Kasten of the American Anti-Slavery Group in which true stories of modern day slavery are told. Sadly, slavery, though officially outlawed in every country in the world, still occurs. Approximately 15 to 30 million people are still enslaved. Here are some photos of me meeting Gloria, an amazing and very moving experience for me.*

When I was about seventeen, I heard Gloria Steinem make a remark I was not ready to hear. It shocked me, but it stayed with me. In response to a question about abortion, she said, “Honey, if men could get pregnant, abortion would be a sacrament.”

All of recorded history ran out from under me as when the tide on the beach takes the sand out from under your feet and leaves you dizzy. I realized I had been conned. By religion, in particular, which plays on good people's innate sense of responsibility by creating guilt where it might not exist and using this guilt to control people's lives.

I asked myself, what if society had given us a different set of rules? We would think differently about many things, including abortion.

One’s opinion of abortion is not the issue. One should never tell another woman what to do. The issue is power. Power over us. Power over our lives. We need to take that power back. That’s why I wrote Atlantis, poems about the United States being another Atlantis. Not because I think the United States is about to sink into the ocean. But because I think we can stop our country from destroying itself and the rest of the world with us.

I gifted her a copy of Atlantis, which seemed to please her very much. I had to tell her how she had influenced me.

Gloria’s response when I told her that a statement of hers had changed my life was to sit back and listen. As I explained, she answered, “I didn’t say that! It was said by a female Irish cab driver, in Boston!”

We went on to talk about religion, and needless guilt about sex. That's when I made her laugh, which was great!



She made some excellent comments on imperialism, which always results in slavery, the subject of the evening.


It is always sad and terrifying to me, especially on a night when we were speaking with women who had escaped real slavery, that people who should otherwise be free, have actually chosen slavery in so many ways. 




*(You'll notice, behind Gloria's head, ironically, sadly, in keeping with the recent #metoo movement is a poster for one of Harold Bloom's books - Harold Bloom, the Yale professor who sexually assaulted his graduate student, another feminist writer, Naomi Wolf in 1983. Whenever I see this photo, his name rankles.)


©Patricia Goodwin, 2019

Patricia Goodwin is the author of When Two Women Die, about Marblehead legends and true crime and its sequel, Dreamwater, about the Salem witch trials and the vicious 11-year-old pirate Ned Low. Holy Days is her third novel, about the sexual, psychological seduction of Gloria Wisher and her subsequent transformation. Her newest poetry books are Telling Time By Apples, And Other Poems About Life On The Remnants of Olde Humphrey Farme, illustrated by the author, and Java Love: Poems of a Coffeehouse. Previous poetry books, Atlantis and Marblehead Moon are currently out of print. However, you may read excerpts from these works at patriciagoodwin.com.

Sunday, April 28, 2019

Magdalenas Are Whispering






The Rose Window, symbol of Mary Magdalene, Glowing


Magdalenas around the world are whispering.

Magdalenas do not want churches to burn. I can hear Elizabeth I (Cate Blanchett) screaming, “This small matter of religion!” Elizabeth, and her namesake who still rules, knew that religious freedom, very like freedom of speech, is the cornerstone of all freedom. And Magdalenas are peaceful and loving; they do not believe in terrorism, far from it.

But, Magdalenas cannot help but whisper and wonder if the fires in the three churches were not part of the curse of the last Knight Templar Grand Master, Jacques de Molay who was burned at the stake on the very site where Notre Dame stands now. The three fires, that is, Notre Dame, the Church of St. John in New York City, and the Temple Mount in Jerusalem, all burning on the same day, Palm Sunday, the day Jesus rode into Jerusalem.



Fire at St. John the Divine, NYC





Temple Mount, Jerusalem


Notre Dame sits on the Île de la Cité in Paris which has gone through many incarnations. 

First, the Celtic Parisiis, the first Parisians, settled on what was then a remote and isolated island on the River Seine. Their place of worship, built on ley lines, those invisible demarkations of lines of earth’s natural energy, was a Celtic temple to the Goddess Isis, the Divine Feminine. Next, the Romans took over and created a temple to Jupiter. Apparently, the Emperor Augustus was intimidated, as many old white men are, by the bare breasts of the Goddess. 





Goddess Isis


But, the Île de la Cité was meant to represent feminine power. After the Romans, another transition - the Knights Templar created a holy shrine to worship the true bride of Jesus, Mary Magdalene, whose womb is still considered to be the treasured Holy Grail, the cup that carried the bloodline, the child, Sarah, born of Jesus and Mary. Like the Knights Templar, Magdalenas believe that not only does Mary Magdalene symbolize the Holy Grail and the Bloodline, but she stands for the true message of Jesus Christ, one that has been stolen and corrupted by the Catholic Church, that of love, marriage, children and a natural, peaceful life, much closer to the original Celtic intention - definitely NOT a long-suffering, Jesus died for your sins, crucifixion, terrorizing all Catholics into grief and guilt and shame and giving money and paying tithes and dying in the Inquisitions. Not to mention the fake chastity and the ostentatious wealth of the Catholic Church.

Jesus told his disciples, “If you do not speak of this, I tell you, the very stones will cry out.”

The Knights Templar, whose original title was The Poor Fellow-Soldiers of Christ and of the Temple of Solomon, was originally established as a military order to protect pilgrims traveling to the Holy Land of Jerusalem. Their headquarters in Jerusalem was the Temple Mount. The Knights Templar became a favorite charity and accumulated, ironically, a great deal of wealth, becoming, instead of poor soldiers, a very early bank. The Templars were a strong and powerful organization from its founding in 1119 until 1312 when the order fell out of favor with King Philip IV of France who was deeply in debt to the Templars. Philip conspired with Pope Clement V to have the Templars disbanded but not before they tortured and burned many of the Templars at the stake. Most prominently, was the last Knight Templar Grand Master Jacques de Molay, who cursed both king and pope as he perished. Molay cried out, “God knows who is wrong and has sinned. Soon a calamity will occur to those who have condemned us to death.” Pope Clement died only a month later, and King Philip died in a hunting accident before the end of the year. Regardless of the deaths of these two men, it seems the Templar Bank easily morphed into the Vatican Bank in the resulting exchange of power from Templars to Catholic Church. The temple to Mary Magdalene easily shape-shifted to the worship of the Virgin Mary, promoting the Catholic Church's profiteering message of celibacy, grief and suffering. 

The Templars disbanded and traveled far and away to establish new orders: to Scotland where they began Scottish Rites Freemasonry and built Roslyn Chapel; some fled to Malta and became the Knights of Malta; some went to Portugal and became the Knights of St John. The Templars set up Switzerland, which to this day bears their flag - a white field and red cross - and of course we have the secret Swiss bank accounts. And the guardians of The Pope are the Swiss Guard. The Templars owned much of London too. Think of all the Temple names in London: some of the Templars’ lands in London were later rented to lawyers, which led to the names of the Temple Bar gateway and the Temple Underground station. Two of the four Inns of Court which may call members to act as barristers are the Inner Temple and Middle Temple – the entire area known as Temple, London.

The Knights Templar said, “Everything is hidden in plain sight for those with eyes to see.”

Magdalenas around the world are whispering about the three fires. Magdalenas are whispering, “They are worshipping the wrong Mary.”

Jesus told his disciples, “If you do not speak of this, I tell you, the very stones will cry out.”

Notre Dame Cathedral, the fire at the Church of St. John in New York City and the Temple Mount in Jerusalem. 

All three sites connected to the Knights Templar and their message of Jesus and Mary Magdalene, kept alive through hundreds of years. 

The beautiful rose windows of Notre Dame survived, as did the bees kept on the roof of Notre Dame. The rose is the symbol of Mary Magdalene - roses in art, architecture and music keeping her legend alive through the ages. Painters, troubadours, sculptors alike have painted roses, sung of roses, carved roses. Think of Rosalyn Chapel, Scotland; think of the bees of Rosalyn Chapel, entering their sacred hives through a carved rose. Look for the roses in art, look also for the scallop shell, another symbol of the Divine Feminine.

There is a discussion now of a possible green roof for the future of Notre Dame. That would be an incredible move into the future, a more feminine, life-giving future!



                                               Photo/Kristin Coppola


After the fire, the Holy Spirit still lives at Notre Dame. 



©Patricia Goodwin, 2019

Patricia Goodwin is the author of When Two Women Die, about Marblehead legends and true crime and its sequel, Dreamwater, about the Salem witch trials and the vicious 11-year-old pirate Ned Low. Holy Days is her third novel, about the sexual, psychological seduction of Gloria Wisher and her subsequent transformation. Her newest poetry books are Telling Time By Apples, And Other Poems About Life On The Remnants of Olde Humphrey Farme, illustrated by the author, and Java Love: Poems of a Coffeehouse.


Within this blog, Patricia writes often about non-fiction subjects that inspire or disturb her, hopefully informing and inspiring people to be happy, healthy and free.

Thursday, February 21, 2019

You Gotta Be Rich To Kill Somebody And Get Away With It: Iconic Lines Taken Out Of Iconic Movies





It’s the first scene of the iconic movie Chinatown and Curly (played by the immortal Burt Young) is lamenting, “Oh, oh, oh, she’s no good!” about his cheating wife, and Curly moans and carries on and at some point cries out, “I think I’ll kill her!” Jake Gittes (Jack Nicholson), the private eye who took the pictures of Curly’s wife with her lover, gets very angry, he pounds the desk with his fist, he screams at Curly, “You gotta be rich to kill somebody, anybody, and get away with it. You think you got that kind off dough, you think you got that kind of class?”

Someone took the line out of the movie.

A line that is key to the meaning of the film. 

The great thing about being older is that you get to experience things first hand so you remember stuff everyone else has forgotten or didn’t know existed. The terrible thing about being older is that you get to experience things first hand so you remember stuff…well, you get the drift.

The first time my husband and I saw Chinatown at home, probably on VHS, we were so stunned we practically jumped off the sofa, “Wait, they took out the line!” The great screenwriter and teacher, Syd Field remembers. He talks about that line in his book, Screenplay: The Foundations of Screenwriting, in Chapter 7, called “The SetUp: Wherein We Discuss the Importance of the First Ten Pages of Chinatown” (Screenplay by Robert Towne).

I mean, maybe you have to be older to understand the holiness of what I just placed down there. Robert Towne. Chinatown. Syd Field. Now, I know that screenplays change all the time while the film is being made. But, no, not after the movie is made, after it's seen, after it becomes SACRED! I mean, we heard the line! And, we got it. So, it’s not just in Syd Field’s fabulous book. And, when you think, when you as a devoted film viewer think on the final scene of Chinatown, you feel that early line deep down in your soul.

Now, here’s a line, man, did this line ever bug me - from The Godfather - who the hell messed with an important line from The Godfather? Did Francis Ford Coppola himself actually reach in and pluck out this line - I mean, I HEARD THE GODFATHER SAY IT - he says it to Sonny -

“Ah, never interfere between a man and a woman.”

It happens to be, not only foreshadowing of Sonny’s demise, but it happens to be Sonny’s fatal flaw - his temper, his arrogance, his impetuousness, his immediate demand for immediate satisfaction, for immediate justice as he sees it.

Ok, so Sonny’s mother says something like it at dinner, she waves her hand and tells Sonny, “Don’t interfere,” when he starts to join in on an argument between his sister and her husband.





Let’s face it, it’s a great line even without Sonny’s issues. It’s one I repeat often. Classic Godfather wisdom right up there with “You cannot truly be a man unless you spend time with your family.” A line which he ostensibly says to his godson, Johnny Fontane, but is really aimed at Sonny to whom the camera pans, off to the side of the room.

So, imagine my surprise when I bought The Godfather set, and watched it in all fangirl eagerness only to be left with the same empty hands. No? No line? Where did it go?

I couldn’t believe it. I know I hadn’t imagined his voice clearly saying the line in my memory.

Then, one Christmas Day, I was busy in the kitchen while everyone else was watching a Godfather marathon on A&E in the living room when my daughter called out, “Mom! Mom! The Godfather said it! He said the line!”

I knew it! It exists somewhere, darling!

I guess there are different forms of movies out there, some whole, some cut for some reason, some cut to make room for commercials, some cut for decorum, or censorship. 

Oh, there are others. In the beloved and iconic British TV series, Poldark, for instance, the lovely scene where Ross washes Demelza before he’ll let her into his house. No nudity, only a milky white shoulder is revealed while Demelza gets sloshed with water. Cut.



The original

Another line, one of my favorites. Demelza is visiting the drunkard (now sober), Captain Blamey, to try to encourage him to see her cousin-in-law, Verity, again, a union that has been forbidden by Verity’s family. Captain Blamey tells Demelza that she is certainly extraordinary to visit him and propose a new meeting with Verity. Demelza, putting on her gloves while she talks, says, “T’is only now I’m learning the ways of gentlefolk and I can already see what misery it brings to people’s lives.”

It’s an important line, cut from the VHS version for a couple of decades, but replaced in the DVD (no bathing scene, however). The entire theme of Poldark is freedom. Ross Poldark, in the first scene, after having returned to England from our Revolutionary War in which he fought on the British side, recounts his feelings about the so-called "heathens" (Native Americans) saying they are “often more Christian and more civilized than we.” The person he is speaking to laughs and accuses him of joking. But, Ross isn’t joking. He is often embarrassed by his own class and prefers the honesty and bravery of the poorer people in his country, in effect, championing a new, revolutionary way of life, much like America.

In fact, the very first line of The Godfather, which we hear, in the dark, is “I believe in America.” I hope no one takes it away.


It’s the reason I want to keep important lines in films. Freedom. Freedom of speech. Freedom for the writer to keep his/her words and for the people to keep hearing the truth. After all, I've always believed in fiction as the only real way to get the truth out there.


©PatriciaGoodwin, 2019


Patricia Goodwin is the author of When Two Women Die, about Marblehead legends and true crime and its sequel, Dreamwater, about the Salem witch trials and the vicious 11-year-old pirate Ned Low. Holy Days is her third novel, about the sexual, psychological seduction of Gloria Wisher and her subsequent transformation. Her newest poetry books are Telling Time By Apples, And Other Poems About Life On The Remnants of Olde Humphrey Farme, illustrated by the author, and Java Love: Poems of a Coffeehouse.

Thursday, February 7, 2019

The Rape of the Mind





Joan Castleman wins the Nobel Prize in Literature


There’s a line in the episode, “Homo Homini Lupis” of Law & Order Criminal Intent in which Detective Bobby Goren, ever champion of women, says to the perp, “You raped her mind, you raped her body, but SHE GOT YOU!” The rape victim, a little girl, was able to draw the creep’s tattoo from memory, “every tiger stripe, every letter, every number.”

As I watched The Wife, I kept hearing that line. Though I did not know the outcome of the story, I could feel the rape of Joan Archer’s young mind. Joan is writing her husband’s books. Why? Because it’s 1968 and we are told, society doesn’t want to read books by female authors. Joan has been able to “sell” her husband, Joe Castleman, to a publisher by promising the waspy house their very own Jewish author. (Literary movies often name the characters after characters in famous fiction and I couldn’t help but hear the name of one of lit’s most famous liberated, feminist characters, Isabel Archer*, a woman who also gets “caught.”) The young Joan is beautifully and delicately played by Glenn Close’s daughter, Annie Starke. As we watch her writing, we can sense the tension slowly building. At least, at least, Joan, young and old, gets to keep her words. One of my favorite scenes is when the elder Joan (played by Oscar! Oscar! Glenn Close) is on the phone extension listening to the Nobel representative congratulating her husband on his work: I could see her mind listening to his praise, taking it all in, as though he were speaking directly to her about her own accomplishment. Of course, unknown to him, he was speaking to her.



Colette etching Willy's name in the glass


Interestingly, also out this year is a similar story, a real life story about the writer, Colette, another female author forced by society’s lack of interest in the female voice, to write under the shadow of her husband’s identity. 

But, was society uninterested in the female voice? Colette wrote a series of novels about the mind of a young girl, Claudine. These were very popular, both when the public thought they were written by Willy and when they thought the books were written by his sensational wife. Eventually, Colette leaves Willy and writes more books under her own name. Her authorship becomes known.

Both these women got to keep their words. The books existed. Women had written them. 




Alice &

But, another movie troubles me. The Girl in the Book (2015). This story is about Alice, a young girl with exciting potential. Her parents are literary; she has every advantage of wealth, education, and social contacts. She has talent, and more importantly, a voice. We hear her words as she writes them down: they are cool, sophisticated, poetic yet precise. But, Alice is extremely lonely. She comes home and ritually calls, “Hello?” to an empty house. One of her father’s authors, a ruggedly handsome much older man, pays attention to her. As Alice cries, later in the story, “You were the only one who ever seemed to see me!” She doesn’t realize until it is too late that his attention was the grooming process of a pedophile. 

He raped her body. He raped her mind. 

He stole her words.

Far worse, he stole her confidence by constantly criticizing and undermining every one of her efforts while he was busy racking up her brilliance for himself. He writes a Lolita/Catcher in the Rye type of novel called "Waking Eyes" that becomes wildly successful with the kind of success every writer desires - the book becomes a classic. In fact, he writes several more books on his own that do not catch fire.

He took her talent. He took her ambition. He took her faith. 

What kind of a man needs to rape the mind of a little girl to get his words?

A very, very small man.

Does Alice “get” him? Does she get her words back? 

I won’t tell you. I will say that it is a long, tortuous journey for Alice. A tenuous effort to grasp that which does not exist yet, that which is forming. 

Colette and Joan Castleman were lucky. They got to keep their words. 

Another favorite scene in The Wife is the very last scene. Joan's husband has passed away from a sudden heart attack and she is flying home from the Nobel ceremony in Stockholm. What will Joan do now? we ask ourselves, as Joan looks up at us from the blank page of her notebook. She smiles.

Oh, yeah!

*Isabel Archer, The Portrait of a Lady by Henry James

©PatriciaGoodwin, 2019

Patricia Goodwin is the author of When Two Women Die: A Historical Novella of Marblehead, Telling of Two Murders Which Happened There, 301 Years Apart (2011), about Marblehead legends and true crime, and its sequel, Dreamwater(2013), about the Salem witch trials. Her novel, Holy Days(2015) is about the sexual, psychological seduction of Gloria Wisher and her subsequent transformation. Her poetry books are  Java Love: Poems of a Coffeehouse (2018); Telling Time By Apples, And Other Poems About Life On The Remnants of Olde Humphrey Farme, (2017), illustrated by the author; Atlantis (2006), and Marblehead Moon (1993). All Plum Press. Her poetry has been published in nthposition.comPemmican PressRadius: Poetry from the Center to the Edge and The Potomac, among others. For more work and information, please visit http://patriciagoodwin.com/