So, I finished GR last night. So much more beautiful and obscene than I could possibly have fathomed as a callow teenager. And I have glimpsed more finely now the roots for so many of the esthetic choices in my life. “Keep cool, but care.”
The Shakedown is now between V. and resuming Sodom & Gomorrah a dozen or so pages on from where I left off. My mind is still reeling from GR, and there are more than a few overlapping characters and elements, so I may just have to dig in. My copy of V. is a disintegrating Perennial edition from 1986. It’s already lost the half-title page. The binding glue has calcified and is dropping off in little white flecks. I have paperbacks from the 1950s that are in better shape. Shameful. But I’ll make due.
Research for my prose pieces continues, and consumes most of my so-called free time. The minute I don’t want to learn anything new, someone shoot me. (As my neighbor said, tipsy from his second brandy alexander, if you stop moving, you’re dead.) Volcanoes; the Fisher King; the West India Company; the I Ching; the river IJssel; film terms and the history of cinema; the Iliad; medieval satires. Put it all in a pot, along with the medieval and modern ideas of evil (which are, delightfully, almost complete opposites), and you have something rather fun. And I’m reading Ruskin and Boëthius, too.