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Instagram: @justpassingthrough.novel

A poem inspired by the New York Public Library

Picture yourself here.

Look up.

From your phone and out, towards the cold marbled floor that now holds you.

A floor that, despite its thousands of daily visitors, remains

pristine.

Pristine with, of course,

a touch of

dust.

Here.

And there.

Now, look higher.

Past the books. Above the shelves. Beyond the stacks.

Let your eyes wander.

Take in the people, the strangers. Their focus, their gaze:

down.

At the task at hand.

Studying. Reading. Learning. Quenching their thirst on the information all around them.

The words and sentences hanging silently

in the air, passing…


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When life hits the metaphorical fan and it all comes crashing down, do you face it head-on or go running in the opposite direction? This is one girl’s story of the latter, and the silent pull towards something more.


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A few weeks back, while perusing through a tiny, 50-year-old bookshop in the French Quarter, I stumbled upon this copy of Sense and Sensibility by Jane Austen, which just so happens to be her very first published novel. As I sit here, draft one complete and one step closer to the finish line of my own (first, to-be-published novel), all I can think is, wadddup Universe, I see your timing…


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Instagram: @justpassingthrough.novel

“We are all broken. That’s how the light gets in.”

I’m just gonna come out and say it.


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“Walt took a deep breath to fill his lungs with the cold Illinois air, and was met with the soft and perfect landing of a snowflake just on the tip of his nose. The ends of his smile began to curl as he looked up towards the dusk skies that glowed with the faintest hint of red. He tried to recall the saying about what red skies meant for sailors back in the day, but shrugged it off assuring himself that, whatever it was, it probably didn’t apply to train conductors.

Hearing the sound of his pocket watch, he glanced down. It was just moments away from ticking to the top of the hour, and soon they would begin the long-awaited, final stretch to bring their 2,500-mile journey to a close.

Somehow everything had gone off without a hitch, which for Walt, was all he could ask for in his line of work.

Still, for some reason, the second to last station of his voyages were always accompanied by the bittersweet feeling of goodbye, of yet another journey coming to a close.

He was excited, sure. Relieved? You bet.

Of course, one thing stood out most with the anticipation of those final, screechy turns of the wheels.

Home.”

An excerpt from “Just Passing Through” by Kristy Gustafson. …


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This is writing.


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Instagram: @justpassingthrough.novel

“But dear, don’t be afraid of love. It is only magic.”

— r.m. drake

Let’s break this down, shall we?

When you grow up consuming as much rom-coms and love songs as you do air and Vitamin D (umm, guilty…), quotes like this are sure to pull at the heartstrings. It paints the picture of love and magic being one in the same, which — hey, is a beautiful picture. But, in my experience? A mere Instagram filter to what lies beneath.

I’m all for the love-is-magic tale, but, most days, the real story is of two lives coming together and having to work at things every single day. It’s trust, patience and compromise, making mistakes and learning to forgive and embrace flaws (yes, even your own) — all the while knowing your partner is doing the exact same thing for you. (I mean, let’s hope, right?) It’s recognizing that, at the end of the day, we’re all human, and not every second is going to be perfect and wonderful and dusted with little specs of rainbow confetti magic.

But, that’s not to say those times don’t exist either.

All I’m saying is remember, that movies, songs, and yes, even books (*gulp*) often don’t tell the full story, and there is always more to it than we think.

Relationship are built on the stuff between sentences, behind closed doors, and what comes after the credits roll to black. It’s the real and honest, filter-less, good, bad and ugly, vulnerable, messy, beautiful, and raw tale of two people throwing caution to the wind, swapping pieces of their heart, a little at a time or all at once, staying true to themselves and trying their very best along the way.

So, yes, don’t be afraid of love. But don’t be afraid of what comes along with the territory either. Welcome, embrace and trust in the process whole-heartedly. …


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Last week, I spent the day drinking in the humid beach air, too many coffee refills to count, and the long-ago written stories from my now 80-something Grandfather recounting life after growing up on a farm in Lake Village, Indiana.


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Holiday recovery mode is in full effect, and once again, I’m reminded of this phrase right here.

il dolce far niente.

How sweet it is to sit back and bask in the freedom of doing absolutely nothing.


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Every now and then when I come across an old typewriter like this one, I picture myself going back in time. I imagine what it would be like swapping in my MacBook (and backspace button… #yikes) and writing my novel with the meticulous precision required of an L.C. Smith & Bros.

About

Kristy Gustafson

writer + modern-day explorer + author-to-be of "Just Passing Through" | instagram: @justpassingthrough.novel | pre-orders: http://eepurl.com/dw-_DX

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