This week's post is a tribute to Dewey, author of The Hidden Side of a Leaf blog, who passed away recently. For anyone who doesn't know, she was a book blogger and was part of a huge community of bloggers. One of the activities that she ran was Weekly Geeks. Each week a new theme would be announced and everyone was invited to participate by blogging about this theme and then linking to their posts on Dewey's blog. So, this week, in honor of Dewey, Becky has suggested that Weekly Geeks #27 be a tribute to Dewey. Please visit Becky's site for links to other Weekly Geeks' tributes to Dewey.
Like so many people, I was shocked to hear of Dewey's passing. I didn't really know her the way a lot of other bloggers out there did-we didn't email each other, we didn't chat, but we did exchange the occasional friendly comment. Hers was one of the first blogs that I started following. I was drawn in by the title, which comes from this Toni Morrison quote:
"Birth, life, and death--each took place on the hidden side of a leaf."
I love this quote; as a gardener, I know how true this is in a literal sense, but it is also infinitely expandable and applicable as metaphor. We each live on our own hidden side of a leaf, and there are a thousand different things that take place in each of our lives that no one else (or at least very few others) is ever even aware of, but that doesn't make them any less miraculous or any less important to us. Dewey's blog existed in a microcosm of the blogosphere that I might never have found, had I not turned over the right leaf. But I did turn over the right leaf, and there I found a huge community of bloggers who were deeply supportive of one another, with Dewey setting the example at every turn. In fact, I think 80% of my current Google Reader list can be attributed to Dewey in one way or another!
She organized and participated in challenges, reviewed books, headed up the 24-hour Read-a-thon and the Bookworms Carnival, not to mention the Weekly Geeks. I don't know how she managed to do it all, but I was always impressed by her. And I was always going to participate Next Time.
If you visit The Hidden Side of a Leaf, it is easy to see how many people had become a part of Dewey's on-line community, and also how many of them considered Dewey a true friend, even though many of them had never met her in real life. I can't remember where I heard this-some movie or something I think-but years ago I remember someone saying that when we leave this world, we will not be judged by who we loved but by who loved us. It seems to me that Dewey was loved by an amazing group of people, both in the blogging world and in her real life (she paid a lovely tribute to her husband and her son in her "About Dewey" section). She has been an inspiration to me and to so many others, and for that I will always be appreciative. I have added the memorial button (courtesy of Bethany) to my sidebar as a tribute to a fellow blogger whom I admired.
My deepest condolences to Dewey's family. I am so very, very sorry for your loss.