Planet of the BlindBook - 1998
"The sensorium of the blind who possess some marginal vision is by turns magical and disturbing," writes poet and educator Stephen Kuusisto. "My eyes dance in a private, rising field of silver threads, teeming greens, roses, and smoke." This is the record of a handicapped life, but it is also an extraordinary literary achievement. Stephen Kuusisto has been legally blind since birth, and in this stunning memoir he has succeeded in translating his opaque, kaleidoscopic world of shape and color into poetic and luminous prose. Brought up to disavow his blindness, Kuusisto spent much of his life trying to pass as a sighted man, traveling everywhere at dizzying speeds without a cane. Still, he writes, he remained ashamed of his "blind self." As a child with bottle-lens glasses, he was ridiculed by his classmates; as an adolescent he struggled first with obesity, then anorexia; as a young adult, in love with reading, he suffered the derision of teachers who felt he could not possibly keep up with his studies. Fueled by his passion for the written word, Kuusisto nonetheless persisted, successfully, in conquering academia--until a devastating accident forced him to acquire the white cane at last. Almost immediately the cane became his "divining rod," but it was only a matter of time before he felt the need for a more powerful ally. Enter Corky, a two-year-old yellow Labrador retriever who became his guiding eyes and changed his life forever.
Publisher: New York : Dial Press, 1998.
Branch Call Number: 362.41/KUUS
Characteristics: 194p. 22cm.