The hospitality of stories

“Stories enact a form of mutual hospitality. What is story if not an enticement to stay? You’re invited in, but right away you must reciprocate and host the story back, through concentration: whether you read or hear a narrative — from a book or a person — you need to listen to really understand. Granting complete attention is like giving a silent ovation. Story and listener open, unfold into and harbour each other.” 

Priya Basil, Be My Guest, Canongate, 2019, 12.


  1. Thanks for sharing Simon. I have been thinking lately about Listening to understand instead of listening to respond. Your post gives me more to think about. Peace to you

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