Ten Days In

What an adventure!  We’re ten days into this experiment.

It feels like having a permanent table at a sunny outdoor cafe in Paris (or Venice or Berkeley) where friends stop by to improvise in an endless conversation (until we all duck for cover with that unexpected downpour).  Maybe that’s too Sartre.  Maybe the blog has been more like a conversation with Thoreau on a walk.  Except he mostly walked alone, and this has been very social from the start.  Most writing is a lonely affair, but not this.

Thanks, all.  I’ll take care of the tab.  And see you tomorrow, rain or shine.

Grades are in, and starting to pack for another jaunt to the West Coast.  My first at the American Literature Association. I’ll meet some Concord Saunterer folk in the City.

And since you  asked . . .   — For summer reading?

Two indispensable guides to grieving and raising the dead:  The poet Anne Carson’s brilliant Nox — endlessly, movingly fascinating and sad, arresting for the writing and also for the so-physical presentation, like a scrap book or wedding book or funeral book by someone who knows how to feed the eye and the hand, as well as the more intellectual and affective parts of the soul. 

Then a companion morsel: Richard Martin’s reissue of the luminous Lattimore translation of The Illiad.

And while I’m on this roll, for the ups and downs of the  dead, check out Robert Pogue Harrison’s, The Dominion of the Dead.  Culture as limbo, purgatory.


2 comments on “Ten Days In

  1. […] Ed Mooney–in celebration of being Ten Days In) Share this:TwitterFacebookEmailPrintLinkedInLike this:LikeBe the first to like this post. This […]

  2. Andrew Corsa says:

    The Illiad, I love.

    And you’re in doubly company, too. When I first read that Thoreau brought it with him, I was (is this odd?) reminded of what Plutarch said of Alexander:

    “Onesicritus informs us that he [Alexander] constantly laid Homer’s Iliads, according to the copy corrected by Aristotle, called the casket copy, with his dagger under his pillow, declaring that he esteemed it a perfect portable treasure of all military virtue and knowledge.”

    Also, my man Thomas Hobbes wrote what was, at the time, a well-respected translation of that work. In his preface, he writes about the virtues and profit the heroic poem can offer: “By profit, I intend not here any accession of wealth, either to the poet, or to the reader; but accession of prudence, justice, and fortitude, by the example of such great and noble persons as he introduceth speaking, or describeth acting.”

    (Is this maybe like the virtues of the wild animals: partridge, loon, etc. that Thoreau “introduceth?”)

    Anyway, with Hobbes in toe, maybe you’re in “triply” good company.

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