Tennessee Williams: Love Deeply

Sidney Lumet, Marlon Brando and Tennessee Williams on the set of The Fugitive Kind (1959)

Interview with Tennessee Williams
Conducted by James Grissom
New Orleans

This is how I think you need to make the world work for you: You have to love the talent within yourself, but not until you have offered some service, some reverence, to the talents that helped you get through the brutal childhood or the third rewrite or the inner war that always threatens to break out. If we tithe in our churches, we should also tithe toward those others who are toiling in our trenches.

This is not easy. It is, in fact, brutal at times, because the human nature is to notice one's own lack: to see the extra gift in the other man's hand and begrudge him the pleasure. This is poison. Keep your eyes open and trust those people who care that you're alive and working, and then, one glorious day, like flakes of snow or leaves in the wind, a Marlon Brando or a Jessica Tandy or a Geraldine Page or a Kim Stanley or a Maureen Stapleton or am Elia Kazan drift into your path. The walk gets less lonely; the view infinitely prettier.

Friends glow into being when you keep your eyes open. Love deeply what they offer. Affection, genuine affection, is glorious, whatever the source.

Love the people in your life and in your struggle deeply and consistently.

©  2016  James Grissom


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