Original essays by Arthur Durkee:
These occasional essays are, I suppose, spiritual essays, sutras, articles of consciousness and faith, notes towards spiritual autobiography. They are personal essays, a kind of Credo, containing things I knew to be true at the time of their writing. They are very particular, but I hope also universal.
They come to me about once a year, or less, at times when I have been thinking deeply. When an essay is ready to manifest, like a poem that comes through after much contemplation, it often feels like dictation. As if all the writer must do is get out of the way, and let the ideas and language pour forth of their own volition. Suddenly, I begin to write, and can spend all day or night at it, writing in a fever of white heat. I never know it's done until it's done. But the moment it is done, I know the essay belongs to this group. There is usually very little to revise, afterwards; perhaps to clarify a point or punch up a phrase, but nothing structural.
In form, these have been called spiral essays: their themes recur, recycle back, move in a spiral manner, the main point re-appearing more than once, but slightly altered each time both by its new context and by the slight reframing and restating that occurs with each repeat. This is a natural, organic form, derived from the material itself, and not a form I consciously set out to create with intention.
I regard these essays as the same in type, if not in content. They are not a series per se; rather they are a genus, or order: they have a kind of shared taxonomy, rather than a sequential mapping.
The Pathfinders: A Sermon to the Dead
Late Night Thoughts While Listening to Hildegard of Bingen (A
The Way of the Spiritual Warrior
The Sacred Heart in the Labyrinth
Seeing in the Light
Flowers of October
India In Me
The Most Excellent Human Quality