Know thyself. That’s my motto. Angela is a workaholic, and I am a lady of leisure. Angela is a literary artist, teacher, independent scholar and a slow thinker. I spend two or three hours a week in Zumba class, and the other hours running, walking, lifting weights. I know of Angela from classroom lectures, blog bylines for angchronicles and Twitter posts, writer’s groups, and the church bulletin.
I like to scribble in a diary, journal or notebook; she shares this habit, but wants to rewrite some of those entries for public reading yet frets and labors over revisions. Angela teaches diary and journal writing, how to keep one, and how to read one as literature, as a scholar she searches for unpublished diaries making parallels between private writing and public discourse.
I like to travel, visit museums, traipse through art galleries and TJ Maxx, and revel in a Broadway or off Broadway show. Angela and I have a good relationship. I let myself go, drink red wine, take in the wisdom of King Solomon; Angela analyzes, thinks, and attempts to learn how to laugh at herself. She seeks wisdom in varied forms of literature. I have stacks of books, read and unread, lingering on stairs, bookshelves, tables and chairs. If a book has post-its, underlined passages, and questions in the margins, Angela has read or is reading those books. I used to read one book at a time, but Angela showed me I could begin another before finishing the first.
King Solomon was the wisest man. The Bible claims he was the richest, with the most wives and no disharmony. King Solomon does not ask God for riches or fame, he asks for wisdom: how to be the best he could be for his family, friends, community, and nation. He seeks wisdom in all things. Like King Solomon, Socrates was a lover of wisdom. A philosopher. The wise ancient Greek philosopher did not have riches or harmony in his family, but he asked questions in search of answers, knowing he was not wise.
Angela asks God for wisdom in all things, and I know that I am not wise, but am a 2017 candidate for a doctor of philosophy degree in English and Humanities (ABD). My fields of study: rhetoric and composition, women’s studies, 18th, 19th, 20th century Afro and Caribbean literature. Angela has an MFA in Creative Writing, which is why she knows she is more creative than theoretical, and I am reminded to flip the theory on its head.