A Writers Writer – Pat Conroy -Part 2

IMG_0409Click on this link to my earlier Conroy post 

I am rereading Pat Conroy’s, The Death of Santini, in order to lead the discussion with my book club later in the month. It is a story that makes you weep, that bears witness to the transforming act of forgiveness, and may help you to see that your own losses and pain are small by comparison to others in this world. When I created the blog category – A Writer’s Writer -there was never a doubt that Conroy would be featured. His sense of place, the poetic language he uses to set a scene, who better to learn from. Here are examples of a writer’s writer!

Talking about Ansley Park in Atlanta: “I was still jogging during that time of my life, and there was not a more beautiful place in the city to run. It was a cutoff enclosed hermitage with shapely, eccentric houses shoulder to shoulder with one another, streets that harbored well-tended gardens, and the smell of jasmine always hovering in the air. The oak trees looked over the lesser species in the park and offered the entire neighborhood the cool silages of darkness and the peacefulness of shade.”

And Beaufort: “I still walk its streets in wonder and gratitude, more than forty-five years after my arrival here. Its streets are distillations of roselike beauty, and the air shimmers with an elixir too lovely by half. The town of Beaufort did the most wondrous thing for me and my family – it brought repose to our nest of damaged souls.”

This description of a southern couple: “John carried himself like the well-educated gentleman he was, and Caroline was an exemplary representative of that fragrant-voiced, free-floating subspecies known as the Southern belle.”

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About Stepheny Forgue Houghtlin

Stepheny Forgue Houghtlin grew up in Evanston, IL. and is a graduate of the University of Kentucky. She is an author of two novels: The Greening of a Heart and Facing East. She lives, writes and gardens in NC. Visit her: Stephenyhoughtlin.com
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5 Responses to A Writers Writer – Pat Conroy -Part 2

  1. Oh, Stepheny! I adore Pat Conroy, and The Death of Santini is on my list. His prose is so gorgeous. Thank you for this post!

  2. I’m so glad to hear you also like Pat Conroy. His prose is food for the soul. I visited Beaufort last fall and it is everything he describes and more. Also purchased an original copy of his first book about teaching island children, The Water is Wide.

    • An original copy, lucky you! I haven’t read it. What a way to start a career with the writing of The Water is Wide and what followed, Life Magazine, movie. I reread a passage and say to myself, how is he able to take a language, arrange it a sentence, and have it read as it does. I am in awe.

  3. pbmgarden says:

    My Reading Life by Pat Conroy was the first book selection my book club read when we organized back in 2011. I was not expecting to like it much but he won me over. Went on the read The Water is Wide, which I recommend if you’ve not read it.

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