What is it about this dark underbelly of emotion that gets me every time? I love slipping on my gumboots and rugging up to go out into this landscape. I think wandering into the areas of love, romance, heartbreak, loss, hope, longing… you know the list… means we rub shoulders with the human spirit. Often quite intimately. I think it is a landscape where our commonality as people comes to the fore and also one where your strength of mind, position in society and the world, have very little sway as to how well you will navigate through it.
Undoubtedly there are other arenas where this happens but for me it is the landscape of the heart which connects me to this common humanity. When I was about 9 I was living in the remote highlands of Papua New Guinea in a small mining community. There was a movie in the community center two times a week and on Saturdays I’d go with my dad. I remember walking back one night holding his hand as I cried my eyes out after seeing Romeo and Juliet. How was it even remotely possible that with so much love things could end so badly? … I think I was imprinted to write romance from that point forward.