Tuesday, May 7, 2024

Overcoming Obstacles: Three Writers Who Have Inspired Me By Their Resilience

Their stories are all around us, people knocked down by circumstance who chose to rise again and carry on.

Yesterday I received a wonderful surprise. It was a small package from one of the three people featured in this blog post, Charlene Groves. Charlene is a writer who just happens to have been born blind. I was not yet a serious writer at the time, but we were kindred spirits, impelled toward creative expression. Somehow we hit it off and four decades later we're still in touch.... and she continues to inspire.

The package I received was a thumb drive containing stories and poems... which I am now mulling how to best share.

As many people know I suffered a stroke three weeks ago, a minor one by most measures, but it has incapacitated my writing hand. Rather than be discouraged at my handicapped I have drawn inspiration from others who have overcome obstacles far greater than mine. Here are three whom I have written about in the past. I hope you will read these brief introducti0ns.

John S. Hall, my grandmther's uncle, lost his sight in the Civil War. He went on to be founder and editor of two newspapers and published a wonderful book of poems called Musings of a Quiet Hour, which I now have in my possession.

Interview with John S. Hall, the Blind Poet of Ritchie County

Jean-Dominique Bauby was a French journalist as well as editor of the fashion mag Elle. His "charmed life" took a tragic turn after being stricken by a massive stroke that left him with "locked in syndrome." Despite being unable to move any part of his body he wrote a book about his life one letter at a time by blinking his eyelid. It is a poignant achievement that have repeatedly encouraged me over the years.

The Diving Bell and the Butterfly

I already mentioned Charlene at the top of this page. Here's a poem of hers along with a link at the end to another that I especially like.

Someday -- A Poem About Dreams by Charlene Groves 

* * * 
There are others,
but here are three that came to mind for today. Who are some people who have inspired you?

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