The point of vanishing : a memoir of two years in solitude

2015, eBook , 1 online resource
3378263
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Summary/Review: "On a clear May afternoon at the end of his junior year at Harvard, Howard Axelrod left his dorm-room to play a pick-up game of basketball. In the ski more...
Summary/Review: "On a clear May afternoon at the end of his junior year at Harvard, Howard Axelrod left his dorm-room to play a pick-up game of basketball. In the skirmish for a loose ball, a boy's finger hooked behind Axelrod's eyeball and severed his optic nerve. Permanently blinded in his right eye, Axelrod returned a week later to the same dorm-room, but to a different world. A world where nothing looked solid, where the smooth veneer of reality had been broken, and where the distance between how people saw him and how he saw had widened into a gulf. Five years later, heartbroken from a love affair in Italy and still desperate for a sense of orientation he could trust, Axelrod retreated to a jerry-rigged house in the Vermont woods. Miles from the nearest neighbor, at the dead-end of an unmaintained dirt road, he lived without a computer, without a television, and largely without human contact for two years. Whether tending to the woodstove, or snow-shoeing through the trees, he devoted his energies to learning to see again--to paying attention. He needed to find, with society's pressures and rush now removed, what really mattered. He needed to dig down to a sense of meaning that couldn't be changed in an instant. What followed was a strange and beautiful series of sensory adventures, shadowed by a haunting descent into the dangers of solitude. A gorgeous search into the profoundly human questions of perception, time, and identity, The Point of Vanishing announces the arrival of a major new literary voice of the timeless--which is to say, a major new voice for our harried times"--