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Start a Wiki. Contents [ show ]. Main article: Firemaking. Main article: Farming. Because of her father's French-Canadian heritage they think , she writes with a strange sort of translated syntax which drove my husband crazy when I read it out loud, but which I found enchanting. It made her ideas and "thinks" so much more ethereal: "By-and-by I came to a log.
It was a nice little log. It was as long as three pigs as long as Peter Paul Rubens. I climbed upon it. I so did to look more looks about. The wind did blow in a real quick way-he made music all around. I danced on the log. It is so much a big amount of joy to dance on a log when the wind does play the harps in the forest. Then I do dance on tiptoe.
She learns deep lessons about life and death or bornings and goings-away, as she calls them. Her interactions with her mother were harsh and unfortunately littered with bouts of corporeal punishment, and reading them from Opal's point of view was sometimes heartbreaking. It made me want to just hug that girl and take her for a walk, but luckily she had many kindly neighbors, cows, dogs, frogs, crows, wood rats, chickens and horses to keep her company.
Her fresh and unadulterated love of the earth, her recognition of the healing that comes from being outside among the animals and trees, her faith in fairies and God and angels - this unique perspective painted the entire diary with an unmistakable swash of joie de vivre. If you are not one of those dreamers, if you don't every once and a while strain to hear the voice of the wind in the trees, this book may be a bit too sentimental for you.
Her fondness for naming every single creature she befriends might tire you. Her precociousness might just make you thank the heavens that you weren't her mother. But for me, Opal's diary opened my eyes to a life of at-one-ness that made me want to laugh for joy and reminded me that, as Opal says, "this is a wonderful world to live in.
View 1 comment. This isn't actually the edition I read: I found a hardcover edition sometime around , published in Palo Alto, I think, likewise edited by Jane Boulton [which is why I chose this one for my review], that had at the end a summary of Opal's history and the piecing-together of the diary at Mr. Sedgewick's home. I read it to my daughter at a girl-scout overnight, and when I looked up there were 20 girls sitting around us listening intently. It was truly enchanting, and I still find myself using h This isn't actually the edition I read: I found a hardcover edition sometime around , published in Palo Alto, I think, likewise edited by Jane Boulton [which is why I chose this one for my review], that had at the end a summary of Opal's history and the piecing-together of the diary at Mr.
It was truly enchanting, and I still find myself using her phraseology at times, which takes me immediately into a different space in the world than current reality, which certainly leaves a lot to be desired! Jul 20, Elise rated it it was amazing Shelves: turn-of-the-century , unique-way-of-living , oregon. I give thanks to Benjamin Hoff for his sympathetic presentation and resurrection of Opal's seven year old heart's masterpiece.
I find myself thinking thinks of Opal. I wish she had been my child. The world can be so harsh and cold. The born mystics need sympathy, understanding hearts and care. They have much to show us of the invisible world. Peace Opal Whiteley, wherever you may be. Mar 20, Disco Mo rated it it was amazing. Don't let your sister find your diary. May 01, Eddie Watkins rated it it was amazing Shelves: memoirs-letters-interviews. Beautiful and heartbreaking.kleszcze.co.pl/wp-content/text/anaokulu-oerenci-takip-program-full.php
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It also contains what is possibly some of the purest mystical and naive nature poetry focussed through a child's eyes around. The nature diary is the beautiful part.
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The biography of Opal Whitely also included is the heartbreaking part. Mar 03, Susan's Reviews rated it it was amazing. Precocious Opal and her lyrical manner of speech will steal your heart away and transport you to the green lush forests of Opal's simple world. Her language and descriptions are other-worldly - as if she speaks "in translation" from her unfettered mind to the written page.
I rank this as one of the most moving reads of my life. I believe that the version I read was adapted by Jane Boulton, but the Gutenberg Press has the original version, along with the editor's preface and a picture of the auth Precocious Opal and her lyrical manner of speech will steal your heart away and transport you to the green lush forests of Opal's simple world. I believe that the version I read was adapted by Jane Boulton, but the Gutenberg Press has the original version, along with the editor's preface and a picture of the author - under the title: The Story of Opal: The journey of an Understanding Heart.
Just read it - it is sheer lilting poetry in prose form. Aug 06, Lizzie rated it did not like it. If I could give this book no stars, I would. The real diary of an unusual and gifted five-year-old living in an Oregon lumber camp in the early s. Her diary was "adapted" by Jane Boulton, but I'm not sure exactly what this "adaptation" consisted of. Boulton says she broke the prose down into free verse, but what else did she do? In any case, this is a fascinating diary and the story behind it is fascinating as well. Opal lived in an unhappy home with an abusive foster mother, and her comfort and escape was in nature.
She had many anima The real diary of an unusual and gifted five-year-old living in an Oregon lumber camp in the early s. She had many animal friends and gave them names like Felix Mendelssohn and Horatius, and wrote a great deal about her adventures with the animals. No one's really sure who Opal really was or where she came from. She certainly was not an ordinary Oregon lumber camps child.
Both her parents died when she was a toddler, and no one knows who they were, but Opal writes in the diary in French and displays great familiarity with classical history and literature and with the Roman Catholic Church. The afterword argues that she may well have been the daughter of Henri, Duc d'Orleans, one of the last members of the French royal family. Opal reminds me a lot of how Anne of Green Gables would have been before she moved in with Marilla and Matthew Cuthbert.
Both child and adult readers can appreciate this diary and its unique voice. At M's terse and cryptic recommendation I bought this book on-line. It was delivered to work and, as is her habit, when my friend BV saw it asked 'May I read that please? It has gone to near the top of her all time favourite books list and BV has rea At M's terse and cryptic recommendation I bought this book on-line. It has gone to near the top of her all time favourite books list and BV has read a lot of books. Hoff's description of finding the lost book in the first place resonated with me because he has described how it is that I have found many of the books that have been most important to me in my life: a serendipity and the a feeling that I can 'hear' them calling out to me to be read.
And likewise, I had that feeling when I read M's recommendation, which rarely happens when I get book recommendations from people.
Hoff has created a book of strong contrasts and clashing ambivalent emotions. So strong that they make this a hard book to describe. It begins with his short biography of Whitelely, which is really more a vindication of her having been libelled and dismissed as a fraud than a biography.
In doing his research Hoff came to understand that Whitelely had been willfully destroyed by a malevolent press. Hoff's brief account left me feeling enraged by what is to me an example of a bloodlust and scapegoating by a mob of journalists that collectively decided to suspend their professional and social responsibility in order to demonstrate that they have the power to destroy the life of someone who somehow magically embodied the magical spirit of the earth and life.
The near religious zealotry of the defamation against this life-spirit reminded me of something I read in News of the Universe: Poems of Twofold Consciousness edited by American poet Robert Bly.
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Both William Blake and Novalis very clearly saw that a key aspect to the empiricist's "truth" was the arbitrary and hypocritical denial of the sensual part of the empirical world. That the empiricists were able to "rationally" assert this denial of life is only marginally less astounding than their being successful in doing it! This was why both Blake and Novalis stressed the sensual in their works — they knew what the empiricists were unconscious of, which is that they had arbitrary accepted Christian notions of the earth and female as vile and devoid of life.
Robert Bly cites a blunt, but typical, example of the roots of that empiricism being anchored in conventional Christian Mythology: The French Priest Bossuet, writing at about the same time as Descartes, expressed in this passage one of the more prevalent Christian attitudes towards nature: May the earth be cursed, may the earth be cursed, a thousand times be cursed because from it that heavy fog and those black vapours continually rise that ascend from the dark passions and hide heaven and its light from us and draw down the lightening of God's justice against the corruption of the human race.
When we deny there is consciousness in nature, we also deny consciousness to the worlds we find by going through nature News of the Universe 9.
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It is no wonder that Blake wrote "The Eternal Female groand! Blake's Marriage of Heaven and Hell and Novalis' Hymns to the Night are celebrations of all that the empiricists manage to deny in their sensual world, namely the sensual, the feminine, sexuality and the unconscious. That science is puritanical in its structure and actions can be linked straight back to the widespread acceptance of Newton's single vision which is firmly grounded in his Puritan beliefs from an English Seminar Spring Whiteley's diary is one of the most spiritual sensual examples of the written word I have ever come across, and I can't help but think that her voice was the voice of capital 'L' Life that an industrialized, greed-biased anti-life society found threatening and needed to crush.
And the connection to Blake is, on reflection, quite astounding beyond it coming to me as an out and out surprise. Blake extolled the spirituality of the physical, too. And in deceptively simple writing. I have seen other reviewers who waffle on Hoff's vindication, perhaps falling back on the 'there's two sides to every story' rationale. But Hoff's attention to detail, combined with my having become more fully aware of the social malevolence of the press, has convinced me of the evil done to Whitelely, and that it was willfully done by an agenda-ed press with the desire to hurt.
However, once you dive into Whiteley's childhood writing, her diary, the charm, the elegance, the detail, the love Whitelely has for nature is astounding. Life is more alive with her writing than I have ever experienced before. And even the word love , which has become overused in our age of Hallmark greeting cards and texting, may not describe the feeling so much as rapture: Whitely was enraptured by nature. I suspect it will be either something you will love or hate. View all 7 comments. Sep 27, Elise rated it it was amazing.
This is a really magical book to read - the diary and the forward and afterward make you feel like you know Opal Whiteley.
It's emotional to read about what her life was like after she wrote this diary as a child, but the diary transports you to a world full of child-like wonder. It really is amazing that Oregon doesn't tout this as one of their state treasures as it describes the magic of the PNW very well. I don't think I will ever be able to find another book quite like this! Dec 06, Patrick Green rated it it was amazing. This is one of the most remarkable books I've ever read.
Opal Whitely's childhood diary is not only a window into childhood, but a burgeoning lyrical-naturalist-mystic. Written with crayon and pencil on paper bags and old envelope Opal tells stories of her 's Oregon logging camp life, especially her animal friends like herding dog Brave Horatius, her pig Peter Paul Rubens, and draft horse William Shakespeare. Her uncommon writing style's simplicity makes her observations even more compelling This is one of the most remarkable books I've ever read. Her uncommon writing style's simplicity makes her observations even more compelling. Everything is alive and in conversation with everything else.
Page while picking potatoes: "And all the times I was picking up potatoes, I did have conversations with them. Too, I did have thinks of all their growing days their in the ground, all the things they did hear. Earth-voices are glad voices, and earth-songs come up from the ground through the plants; and in all their flowering And the wind in her goings does whisper them to folks to print for other folks, so other folks have knowing of earth's songs.
I have thinks these potatoes growing here did have knowings of star-songs. I have kept watch in the field at night, and I have seen the stars look kindness down upon them Benjamin Hoff's biography begins the books and explains how the diary was a bestseller and then a newspaperman tried to prove it was not written by a child, but an adult. Hoff proved the authenticity to this reader - both physical evidence and circumstantial - but after reading her diary I thought, "it doesn't matter.
Read her bio and the diary. This is unlike anything I've ever read. This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. Opal Whiteley, born in in the USA, wrote an extraordinary book and was at the heart of an unsolved mystery. Writer Melanie McFadyean explores Whiteley's childhood in an Oregon lumber village and her rise to fame in America, her exotic adventures and many years in British asylum, where she died in Her gravestone in Highgate Cemetery bears the inscription 'I spake as a child. But then people began to wonder.
A gifted amateur naturalist, Opal visited the offices of the periodical Atlantic Monthly, where publisher Ellery Sedgewick asked her if she had ever kept a diary. Opal said an early diary existed, but it had been ripped to pieces by a jealous sister. She had, however, kept the pieces in a hat box.
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Sedgewick sent for the boxful of fragments and set Opal to work, piecing them together. The task took her nine months. Photographs of the mended manuscript, , words long, reveal that it was written in crayon, in capital letters, on any paper she could get, even paper bags. But the diary is too complex to be the work of a young child. Threaded through it are concealed acrostics and oddly-detailed references to French royalty, including dates of birth, place names and historical anecdotes.
In her introduction Opal claimed she had been adopted by the lumberjack family, the Whiteleys, after her mother had drowned, that her real name was Francoise D'Orleans, and that her real father was Duc Henri, Prince d'Orleans. The Orleans family always denied she was genuinely related, the Whiteleys were devastated that she rejected them and, hounded by the press, changed their names and went to ground. Opal Whitely left the USA in the early s, never to return.
She trailed chaos in her wake, but she had charisma and charmed rich and influential people. But her mental condition deteriorated and she was placed in Napsbury Hospital, near St Albans, in , where she spent the next 44 years until her death in We hear from people who met her and knew her, hear extracts from the diary, and musical clips from a recent musical about her life.
Very sweet reprinting of a diary by a little girl at the turn of the 20th century in Oregon. It's not well-known because of the controversy that surrounded Opal Whiteley. Continue reading about Kim Vogel Sawyer. As a mother I could really relate to Anna's anguish as she worried for her children. As a wife I could relate to the realistic portrayal of the woman left to hold house and home together This story continues Kim Vogel Sawyer's tradition of gentle stories of hope, but it doesn't shy away from the harsh realities of life.
Armchair Interviews says: Well written and compelling.
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