Helen Walsh

…co-publisher of Literary Review of Canada, March 29, 2004

dear john

just a quick note to say thank you for writing such a beautiful book…[i] have been so very moved. your presence in these pages is not small. it seeps through the typography, the intimacy, the communion of thought. it compels—in a quiet way—a honesty in reaction. reading this book has reminded me of the utter astonishment i felt when i found lawrence in university (i studied english literature at university of toronto) although i never understood why. but it is exactly the quick. the utter life in it. i am amazed at how intuitively right your thoughts feel, even in relation to those writers i have yet to encounter, but certainly for those, like lawrence or raymond carver or dennis lee or george grant, whose works i have read…yesterday i recommended this book to my friend bobbi. she is the kind of reader you want for this. she has been breakfasting with proust for about a year now and we’ve talked in the past about which authors one shares which meals with. i said you definitely were not someone to linger with over breakfast; it was impossible to do anything else with one’s day except think, read and write after reading spirit book word. the mind is in too thoughtful a place. so thank you for stealing away time for me from life’s practicalities over the past few days…

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