‘Learning about something, staying with what engages our attention, staying beyond the naming of it, is like the layering of sediment.’
Susan Hand Shetterly, Settled in the Wild: Notes From the Edge of Town
An Alexander Technique class to plan, syllabus to outline, course requirements to determine. With a 14 week semester and two classes each week, I’m hopeful the students and I will have plenty of time for ‘staying beyond the naming of it,’ adding multiple layers to the sediment of our Alexander Technique study and practice.
Shetterly uses ‘staying’ twice in one sentence, so it must be important. I can’t imagine it’s an oversight. In editing my food memoir, I’m keen to locate words or phrases used more than once. Just yesterday, I caught ‘have always figured‘ in two essays. Not ok!
Why twice? Certainly, for emphasis. It’s good advice. When singers were discouraged, or struggling with a new skill, I encouraged them to get through the challenging phase by ‘staying with‘ their daily practice routines and the weekly lesson.
And so this Alexander Technique teacher and her students will stay put. We will show up at the studio door two days a week, learn AT principles, practice AT procedures, ‘staying with what engages our attention,’ a primary practice in the Land of AT.
Here’s to the approaching academic year—-