Kevin Kling is many things – a writer, a playwright, a musician, an actor. But if you were forced to describe him using just one word, the best choice would be storyteller, though philosopher wouldn’t be a bad label either. Recently Kevin used TPT’s Almanac program as a forum to talk about the concept that each of us has certain spaces where we feel in harmony with the world. Kevin explained that the Greeks called them “oneiric spaces” -spots where dream and reality come together.
Minnesota – Kevin explained – is, itself, an “oneiric space” since the name is from the Dakota word meaning “where sky and water meet one, indistinguishable from another.” Kevin Kling grew up on a lake and some of his best stories tie back to childhood shenanigans on and around bodies of water. “We would fish for bullheads in the summer, and in the winter, when the ice could hold a kid named Pat Gilligan, we knew it was time to play hockey.”
Kevin says he still goes to a lake when he’s working through something. He ended his essay by talking about how, after the death of his father, he went out on a pontoon boat to think. It was misty. The water was a mirror. “My thoughts soon dove down through the reflection, down pass the cold layers, into the unknown, to the treasures that lie in the solace of the depths. And then I’m back on the surface again, where sky and water meet, particle and wave, dream and dreamer. If the lake is visible and the wind is unseen, I ride the waves.”
Master storyteller Kevin Kling is a frequent essayist on Almanac – and whether he’s waxing poetic about the star or the Vikings, his stories have one thing in common: They stick with you. Check out his State Fair Memories.
Thanksgiving may come around only oncer every year – but this story about his uncle’s “adults-only sauerkraut” is just about perfect all year long.
According to Kevin Kling, “every year, the Vikings break our hearts.” But in 2018, they also broke our souls after losing a stunning defeat to the Eagles, which nixed their chances of being the first NFL team to play in their hometown during the Super Bowl. But their defeat meant so much more, which Kling captures in this poignant, funny essay.