Sunday, May 22, 2005

Why I Have Nothing Interesting to Say

Lowry's Under the Volcano is so, so good, yet so, so difficult, and that is why it has become the bane of my existence. The only thing that keeps me going is my vow to myself that I will someday read it again and understand it. Otherwise, I surely would have throttled myself somewhere amidst the dense writing and multilayered metaphors and intertwining subplots. Not to mention the Spanish, and the Spanglish, and the random drunken outbursts. But then, you get to something like this:
There is, sometimes in thunder, another person who thinks for you, takes in one's mental porch furniture, shuts and bolts the mind's window against what seems less appalling as a threat than as some distortion of celestial privacy, a shattering insanity in heaven, a form of disgrace forbidden mortals to observe too closely: but there is always a door left open in the mind-as men have been known in great thunderstorms to leave their real doors open for Jesus to walk in-for the entrance and the reeption of the unprecedented, the fearful acceptance of the thunderbolt that falls on oneself... (334)
and you don't have the heart to set it down.

But, some fun vocabulary: votive, hoyden, cucumiform (as opposed to cuneiform), crenellation, cloacal, nutation, euchred, recusancy, floriferous, and pukka.

So I haven't been slacking off; I've just been toddling through this monster and my American Heritage Dictionary, 3rd ed.