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October 21, 2016

Your Bedtime Reading List

Bedtime reading joy lying on best organic bedding from Syona Home

There are loads of bedtime reading lists for children out there. But here at Syona Home, we know that sometimes adults need reading material for falling asleep, too. Our bedtime reading list is meant to cast you off into dreamland gently, because it’s our mission to offer you every natural, healthy trick in the book to get the best possible sleep. Starting tonight.

Poetry

When it comes to filling your head with beautiful images, nothing is so evocative as a lovely book of poems. Better yet, poems can be read time and again for fresh meaning.

  • Mary Oliver’s Dog Songs, a celebration of the dogs that enriched the author’s life. “You’re like a little wild thing/that was never sent to school.” 
  • Robert Has’ Praise would serve you well. Consider his first lines, “We asked the captain what course/ of action he proposed to take toward/ a beast so large, terrifying, and unpredictable. He hesitated to/ answer, and then said judiciously:/ ‘I think I shall praise it.’”
  • Pablo Neruda’s Twenty Love Poems and a Song of Despair, in which he writes: “I want / to do with you what spring does with the cherry trees.”
  • Rita Dove’s Mother Love, which explores mother/daughter bonds, “are struggling to sing in their chains.”
  • Louise Gluck’s The Wild Iris, a spiritual contemplation with lines like, “Your souls should have been immense by now, / not what they are, / small talking things…”

Fiction

It’s best to avoid frightening titles, but fantasy, and even dystopic settings can aid relaxation. Anything with a hero and a dreamy setting will do.

  • E.M. Forster’s award-winning A Passage to India is set against the backdrop of the British Raj and the Indian independence movement in the 1920s.
  • D.H. Lawrence’s Women in Love roams from pre-World War I British society to the snowy Tyrolean Alps.
  • Gregory David Robert’s Shantaram is a vivid portrayal of life in Bombay.
  • Margaret Atwood’s, The Handmaid’s Tale, takes us to a dystopic future world where everything has changed.
  • Toni Morrison’s Beloved is the story of Sethe, a woman who escaped slavery. 

Nonfiction:

Although we wouldn’t advise self-help – which could cause the mind to plan and worry – there are plenty of lovingly crafted educational titles 

  • Norman Doidge’s The Brain That Changes Itself is a fascinating book of case studies that demonstrate the power of the human brain to adapt.
  • Eric Weiner’s The Geography of Genius shows how creative genius flourishes in specific places at specific times.
  • Leigh Newman’s Still Points North is a coming of age memoir set largely in a loving portrait of Alaska.
  • Cheryl Strayed’s collection of advice columns, Tiny Beautiful Things, gives a world of wisdom in bite-sized bedtime reading chunks.
  • Any travel guide! Browsing through travel guides is a wonderful way to learn, fantasize, and relax.

It’s been proven that looking at blue light, the kinds that emits from mobiles, tablets and TVs, before you go to bed stimulates the brain into a state of wakefulness. If you are able to fall asleep immediately after using such devices, chances are good you’ll wake up early, or sleep more fitfully. So we suggest paper books, or dedicated backlit e-readers. Sleep tight!

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