The Story with a Heartbeat

Jonathan Livingston Seagull

Image via Wikipedia

Some stories are alive; others are dead.  A story has a heartbeat when it manages to touch the reader and evoke feelings and emotions.  This is how I know that a story has touched me deeply – I cry, I pause for a long time, I get goosebumps, or I can’t stop thinking about it, for days, weeks, or years.

The first book to touch my soul was Jonathan Livingston Seagull from Richard Bach.  A few years ago, I managed to find an autographed copy on Ebay, and I reread the story.  I loved it again, maybe more so.  It is still my favorite book.

This morning, I read a story on a blog – The Jittery Goat – and the story made me cry.  It was sweet, had a great pace, and it touched my heart.  The short story is called “A Sunset for Claire.”  You never know when a story is going to touch your soul; you can’t predict it, it just happens.

Why it happens?  Who knows; it is one of those things.  Maybe we connect with it at a deep and personal level, maybe it reminds us of something, it gives us hope, it talks to us at the right time, we get its genius … the reasons vary from reader to reader.  However, I consider this a treat when it happens.  I like many stories,poems … however, just because I like them and think they are great, that does not mean that they reached my soul – some do, some don’t – this is how it is for me.  This is why I always approach a story with a sense of respect, because I don’t know how much I will get from it and how it will touch my heart.

What is the story or poem that has touch your soul?