27 nov. 2007

The indifferent wind ran through the Aeolian saw-blades of the former mill-town. Thick wet mud left only a few roads passable in the surrounding countryside. Big-boned, intrepid Anna braved narrow gravel passageways to deliver firewood and sarcastic cheer to the acne-scarred denizens of Acacia Country. They bought their guitar magazines and treatises on apophatic theology in the convenience store run by the unenigmatic Miles. Taking off her gloves, Anna answered his muttered greeting with a withering look--there was no other kind of "look" in the county, no other kind of "greeting" for that matter.

Artificial owls, an ineffective deterrent to English Sparrows, guarded garages and carports. A stranger finding himself unexpectedly in these environs might well be struck by the material and aesthetic impoverishment of the population. Garden-gnomes, rusted pickups, the aforementioned plastic owls, the aforementioned guitar magazines, seemed designed by some callous creator to present the image of a non-too-genteel indigence. Or maybe not... The marijuana farms, the artisanal distilleries, the mountain bike trails (when the mud dries out enough to make them usable), narrate a different account, for the more astute oberver, attuned to the allusive repartee of those browsing the wares in Miles' establishment. Two or three weeks suffices to gain a superficial appreciation of the difficulty of the problem. It was three or four months after my own arrival, in fact, that I realized ...

3 comentarios:

Jordan dijo...

The marchioness smoked up at 5 o'clock?

But surely there are novels that don't reduce you to tears. (I wish I had had the chance to say that to Paul Valery, too. Idee Fixe is one of my all-time favorite novel-like texts. What if he'd written more of that, and less in the manner of Monsieur Teste?)

Jonathan dijo...

I love novels. I just felt like getting off my chest every narrative cliché I knew. Once I write through these clichés then I can be a novelist. Stay tuned...

Jordan dijo...

I often enjoy work constructed along "every x I could think of" lines -- or, once you write through these clichés you will already have become a novelist.