Born empty handed,
Die empty handed.
I witnessed life at its fullest,
First things first…
In going through my research for this post, I remembered I’d read another book at about the same time that reminded me so much of this one. But, I’d always felt it was better. It’s probably why I wrote about it years ago and kept this one on the shelf for so long.
Darned if I can remember what that other book is called. I know I wrote about it here, so I started searching my site. Then, my bookshelves.
For more than a half-hour, I searched!
I’m tenacious. Not that it helped.
I wanted to share it because that other book was better, I thought.
Yet, I still kept this one. But I always had a niggly weird feeling about sharing it and wasn’t sure why. (PS: Now, I know. Keep reading to find out why!)
Anyway, after wasting nearly an hour looking, I had to admit to myself that I wasn’t gonna remember that other book. Maybe it’s for a reason. We shall see.
You’re probably also wondering about the subtitle of this post… you know, about hoofy heals? You’re not? Then, nevermind. Don’t even read this next part and mosey on down to the asterick.
For those who stayed, here goes: This book was first published in 1991, which is about the time I read it. I kept it in my collection because I remember it being neat-o. But as I sat down to write today, I realized that all I remember is a mental picture of feet so tough and crusty, they resembled horses hooves. The author had walked the Australian Outback barefoot, you see.
What can I say? I have a foot “thing” that has no meaning other than possibly having been kicked to death in a previous life… or something like that. I joke, but also not, since my mom says I was afraid of boots and buckle up shoes from infancy. Things like that don’t just happen for no reason! But as usual, I digress.
I’m reminded of another book (not the one mentioned – or rather, not mentioned above, as the case may be!).
The Celestine Prophecy was a bestseller in its own right. Both books have their believers and non-believers. Some people believe they’re 100% truth. Others read them as works of fiction. The difference between the two is that Mutant Message is beautifully written.
Morgan (aka Traveling Tongue) has penned a fascinating and beautiful book about a woman’s journey with Aboriginals across rustic native land. No notebooks or recorders, so this story is written using her memory alone.
Her writing is like poetry… consider this paragraph taken from a letter to readers at the beginning of the book:
[Certain countries] all seem to be trying to improve race relations. But somewhere in the dry heart of the Outback there remains a slow, steady, ancient heartbeat, a unique group of people not concerned with racism, but concerned only with other people and the environment. To understand that pulse is to better understand being human or human beingness.
And so begins Traveling Tongue‘s story.
While it is based on true events, it’s also a work of fiction. Much like The Celestine Prophecy, some people will take it all to heart. Others will read it as fiction and enjoy it… then put it down, and never think of it again.
The difference between the two books is stark. While both books have powerful messages, Mutant Message is beautifully written, as mentioned above, but also has very vocal detractors, namely the Aboriginal people.
Check out this website. <<< A big YIKES!
HERE is another site that has more info and an apology from the author. <<< Yikes x 2!
Despite the … issues … the book was an international bestseller.
After reading through the sites noted above… and also thinking about it as I’ve been writing… I realize that my feeling that something felt …off… came from somewhere legit. My gut.
Had I not read the sites, I might have recommended it, simply for the story.
But as one of my favorite authors says…
And we know. We who have seen. ― Charles Pellegrino
I can’t un-know what I have seen. It kinda ruins this book for me.