I am getting over the news that Ray Bradbury died. He lived a full and amazing 91 years, but even so, the news hits me hard. I discovered Ray Bradbury when I was eleven years old – R is for Rocket was the book — and in the next few years I devoured everything he had written to that point, reading some of the books two and three times. I was a lonely, geeky kid from a broken home and was the favorite target of bullies and big sisters. Books were my escape, and Bradbury was the first author I ever discovered that I resonated with in that deep, wellspring of the soul kind of way. His works of science fiction and fantasy blew me away. His style is flowery and often overblown, but wonderfully folksy and kind. Even stories of monsters and mayhem had that “told-by-gentle grandpa” feel. His was a simple, nostalgic and hopeful style. I actually do not much care for many of his later, more recent books, but his writings from the 40s and 50s will ever hold a special place in my heart. I picked up The Machineries of Joy, The Golden Apples of the Sun, and I Sing the Body Electric and my imagination was captivated once more as it had been forty plus years (Yikes!) ago. While I feel like I’ve lost a good friend, his stories will fill me until the day I die. Thank you, Mr. Bradbury, and farewell. May your journey take you places you only ever dreamed of before.
Categories: Personal Reflection