During our recent trip to Key West, Florida, we made it a point to visit the Butterfly Museum, the Lighthouse, and the Haunted Ghost tour. We joined groups of people at America’s most southerly point where a little girl gave us the evil eye for enjoying our lime fruit bars. Yes, our tongues had turned green.
One site we visited was Ernest Hemingway’s Key West Haven. We went on a whim. I’m not particularly enamored by his writings. Less so of his multiple marriages and even less so his dance with spirits that I’m sure contributed to his suicide. Nevertheless, I was taken by his life as I climbed the stairs, ambled through his garden, and enjoyed the many five fingered cats that lounged throughout the house and grounds. Hemingway had a full life, had boxing matches on weekends with his pals, and lived passionately doing what he loved. Much of his life focused on the military and his writing.
We had glimpses of the tools of his trade. There were several typewriters on display throughout the house. Photographs and letters written by and to him had places of honor on the walls.
I was very much taken with his writing room. While I could do without the mounted heads of hunted animals, the cushioned chair and ottoman were definitely something I could and wanted to sink into. The writing table and book shelves that lined the room were absolutely enchanting. It reminded me how important it is to take up space as a writer. I often feel as though having a laptop is enough. It can be. But it doesn’t have to be that way all of the time.
Something moved in me as I gazed at his office. I imagined my own room changed a little bit here and a little bit there. While I have a space, it’s gone through multiple reincarnations, if only in my own mind. With all of my baggage and history with owning myself as a writer, Hemingway has inspired me to take up some more room as I develop my art and craft. He’s again sparked the passion I have for living as a writer.
I’ll let you know how it evolves ❤️