Category Archives: Literature

Notes on Gogol’s “The Nose”

Nikolai Gogol’s story of “The Nose” opens with a macabre scene: a nose found in a loaf of bread. Perhaps this is going to be a murder mystery. But then the story becomes absurd: the nose found its way into … Continue reading

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Nostalgia

The poem I’ve just read has the narrator reading a newspaper, “letting fall” the pages she has finished with, that rustle and crackle as they are shed. It’s a scene to stir nostalgia, as many of us now no longer … Continue reading

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Stories

I reach for my copy of Plexus by Henry Miller. I’m wondering if I’ve written all I can about Miller. I open the book to find out. There’s always something more in here. Today I read Miller’s version of Goldilocks … Continue reading

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Forgetfulness

Forgetting is the essence of writing, says Henry Miller. “Inner turmoil” must be present in good writing, and the inner life of the writer a seething chaos. Moments of past and present come to the surface and are gone again. … Continue reading

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Clutter

A young Henry Miller looks around the home he now shares with his wife Mona. He turns to his library: “Every book on the shelves had been acquired with a struggle, devoured with gusto, and had enriched our lives.” Henry … Continue reading

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William Burroughs and Facts

William Burroughs tells Allen Ginsberg: “I am about to annunciate a philosophy called ‘factualism.’ All arguments, all nonsensical considerations as to what people ‘should do,’ are irrelevant. Ultimately there is only facts on all levels, and the more one argues, … Continue reading

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Henry Miller and Belief

“I believe in God the Father, in Jesus Christ his only begotten Son, in the blessed Virgin Mary, the Holy Ghost, in Adam Cadmium, in chrome nickel, the oxides and the mercurochromes, in waterfowls and watercress, in epileptoid seizures, in … Continue reading

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