Thoughts in a chain of them

Ever make a daisy chain? I used to. Until today, I've forgotten about them for decades. But I did used to love to sit in the grass wherever I found a bunch of these "weeds" and pull up the ones with nice fat stems. I could pierce them with my thumbnail, which, depending on the length of the chain, would become all stained with the green juice of the tiny flower stems as I threaded stem after stem and pulled them through to make the chain. The last one's the hardest - it has to be thick enough for a whole flower to pop through.

Today at a homeschooler's blog, I saw this quote from the novelist Flannery O'Connor:

The writer should never be ashamed of staring. There is nothing that does not require his attention.

I plucked that daisy. Now, that's a juicy one!
So juicy, in fact, that I began to look around for others. There is a delicious little column about O'Connor at Picador & More, called "Flannery's Peacocks." Apparently, the author's first fame came at the age of five, when she taught a chicken to walk backwards.

O’Connor always had a thing for domestic fowl of one sort or another. It began, apparently, at the age of five, when she gained a certain renown for owning a bantam hen who could walk either forwards and backwards; an accomplishment deemed unusual and extraordinary enough in the world of chickens to send a Pathe News photographer from New York to Savannah to capture it on film.

Another juicy one!

More quotes maybe? What sort of thing was she known to say?

When a book leaves your hands, it belongs to God. He may use it to save a few souls or to try a few others, but I think that for the writer to worry is to take over God's business.

Everywhere I go, I'm asked if I think the universities stifle writers. My opinion is that they don't stifle enough of them. There's many a best seller that could have been prevented by a good teacher.

The basis of art is truth, both in matter and in mode.

Oh now, that's it.
Who is she? (was she?)

O'Connor described herself as a "pigeon-toed child with a receding chin and a you-leave-me-alone-or-I'll-bite-you complex."

I love her. I know I've heard her name before, but why haven't I ever read her books? What did she write?

She was a deeply devout Catholic, living in the mostly-Protestant South. She collected books on Catholic theology and at times gave lectures on faith and literature, traveling quite far despite her frail health.

Oh. Well, that explains it. She wouldn't have been in the canon of literature I'd have been exposed to. Now, what did she write?

O'Connor completed over two dozen short stories and two novels while lupus ravaged her body.

(Wiki! Cut it out! Enough background. I love her, I tell you. What are the titles?! The chain of things is long enough. C'mon hand it over. This is all very juicy stuff, but I want titles!)

Thank you. THAT's juicy enough to pop the first flower through.

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