Dear Reader,

I invite you to visit a gallery -- take a tour. This gallery is an entirely imaginary one. It is filled with art suggested to me by my own “tour” of the life of Marcia Muth and by the admittedly superficial study of art that I undertook as part of the preparation of Left Early, Arrived Late. Because the art is imaginary, it depends on your interpretation of my description of each of the pieces. Your participation is necessary for the tour to be interesting or useful. Yours is the imagination that is critical to the tour’s success.

Think of me as your docent on this tour. Twenty pieces of art comprise the collection in our imaginary gallery. Those correspond to the twenty “scenes” in Left Early, Arrived Late. There are two ways in which I can, with your participation, lead you through the gallery.

The first method is for you to delay the tour until after you have read the entire book. Then, return here and approach each of the works of art described in the following material. As you approach the art, read only one description, corresponding to one “Scene” in the book, at a time. Then stop, close your eyes, and try to visualize the art work as the scene describes it. Fill in details for yourself, based on your reading of Left Early, Arrived Late. When you reopen your eyes, ask your self the Gallery Visitors’ Questions (see below) about the scene, explore your answers and any thoughts those answers may have prompted. Only then should you proceed to the next piece in the gallery.

The second approach, the one I encourage you to take, is to use the “tour” and the questions as a companion to your reading of Left Early, Arrived Late. Read the description of the artwork; imagine it in as much detail as you are able; follow that by reading the corresponding Scene from the book. Return to the Gallery Visitors’ Questions. Think carefully about your answers to the questions and about any ideas that they may have suggested to you.

Regardless of which approach you choose, I hope that you will enjoy the “tour” and that you will recommend it to others. Also, I hope that you will provide me with the benefit of your ideas about both the gallery tour and about Left Early, Arrived Late, by writing to me at tjoneswrites1@gmail.com.

Gallery Visitors’ Questions

  • Who are the people depicted in this piece of art?
  • What time period is suggested by the art’s style and/or content? If no particular period, speculate about the artist’s reason for choosing timelessness?
  • Does the style of the “painting” suggest anything about the thoughts or feelings of the people involved?
  • Does having viewed this piece of art enhance your understanding of the content of the book? If so, in what way?
  • If you had been the artist, would you have created this piece of art as a way to suggest or depict some aspect of this part of the book? If not, what would you have done differently --different style, different mood, different subjects?

Enter Gallery Here