Jamaica Kincaid (1949 …)

What I Have Been Doing Lately

Today’s choice is taken from a collection I’ve had on my bookshelf since 1987.  This I know,  because as I opened its pages a postcard from my good friend K fell out.  The smudged, ink message read as follows

” Happy Birthday W. Hope you enjoy this book – it looks quite readable – if nothing else it’ll fill up the Habitat bookshelves.  By the way I don’t know what happened to ‘The Secret Self  mark 1, but if I ever find out you’ll get it for Christmas.”

What a delight to find a little bit off my personal history tucked safely inside The Secret Self/2 Short Stories by Women. The collection was selected and introduced by Hermione Lee. So this is what I was reading thirty years ago in between dealing with a new home, a young child and work.   I double whether I would have picked it off the bookshelf if it hadn’t been for One a Day.  Never did track down Mark 1, but then the internet wasn’t available back then.

As for the story …  What I Have  Been Doing Lately, is an account of what the narrator as been doing lately, seen through a dreamlike state and written as a stream of consciousness.

There is a PDF of the story available but I’ve been unable to paste the link.







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