Dette emne er markeret som "i hvile"—det seneste indlæg er mere end 90 dage gammel. Du kan vække emnet til live ved at poste et indlæg.
He replied the same night. An e-mail conversation ensued and we discovered we were both LT users. I saw that we also share many books, most on religion and spirituality. He is teaching a course next semester on "Death and the Afterlife," a subject that intrigues me. We agreed that a discussion here at LT might be just the thing. He said he was busy with family matters just now but would return here when possible to participate in discussions.
I suggested that he read or review the D. H. Lawrence essays on the Etruscans. I am anxious to know what sources his students will read and discuss.
I know that he is interested in poetry and films, as well as non-fiction/factual sources.
The Etruscans, as everyone knows, were the people who occupied the middle if Italy in early Roman days, and whom the Romans, in their usual neighbourly fashion, wiped out entirely in order to make room for Rome with a very big R.
Continuing the sarcasm, Lawrence says,
...the Etruscans were vicious. We know it, because their enemies and exterminators said so.
Isn't that writing just so delicious?
But Lawrence doesn't rely on sarcasm alone; he comes right out with his opinion of the Etruscans, writing: "Myself, the first time I consciously saw Etruscan things, in the museum at Perugia, I was instinctively attracted to them." Lawrence goes on to describe Etruscan paintings and artifacts with knowledge and sensitivity, showing profound respect for the spiritual lives of the people who produced these things. One of Lawrence's major concerns is that the deep mystery which was at the root of the Etruscans' spiritual lives should be preserved.
FINE AND PRIVATE PLACE isn't as fantastical as Beagle's other works. The novel is set in a graveyard, lonely souls wandering about--haven't read it in over 20 years but it stuck with me. Isn't there an Afterlife (of sorts) in Thornton Wilder's OUR TOWN too?
The title of the Beagle book comes from Andrew Marvell's great poem 'To His Coy Mistress'. Amazingly, he wrote the novel at 19.
Yes, I think you're right. But I don't read Lawrence for "facts." He wasn't a historian, after all, but a writer seeking to make sense of the world and his place in it, and I value that. The essay also sheds light on Lawrence's poems, which fascinate me.
Beagle wrote that book when he was 19? Oh, I'm really jealous now.
M Scott Peck (author of The Road Less Travelled ) has a novel called In Heaven As on Earth : A Vision of the Afterlife. I haven't read it since I'm more interested in nonfiction (such as it is) on the subject.
I'm currently listening to an audiobook version of Amy Tan's book of essays entitled The Opposite of Fate and have been interested to find several stories of her encounters with ghosts, synchronicity and communication with a dear friend after his murder.
Gilgamesh is also a wonderful work about death. In part:
"You will never find that life for which you are looking. When the gods created man they allotted to him death, but life they retained in their own keeping. As for you, Gilgamesh, fill your belly with good things; day and night, night and day, dance and be merry, feast and rejoice. Let your clothes be fresh, bathe yourself in water, cherish the little child that holds your hand, and make your wife happy in your embrace; for this too is the lot of man."
"There is no permanence. Do we build a house to stand forever, do we seal a contract to hold for all time? Do brothers divide an inheritance to keep forever, does the flood-time of rivers endure?"
Which translation of GILGAMESH was that? I think Stephen Mitchell, an author I quite like, translated a new version of GILGAMESH--he also did a terrific job translating THE BOOK OF JOB a few years ago...
The site I used:
I shall see if I can hunt up a copy, Mitchell's BOOK OF JOB was exquisite.
Every year without knowing it I have passed the day
When the last fires will wave to me
And the silence will set out
Like the beam of a lightless star
Then I will no longer
Find myself in life as in a strange garment
Surprised at the earth
And the love of one woman
And the shamelessness of men
As today writing after three days of rain
Hearing the wren sing and the falling cease
And bowing not knowing to what
W S Merwin
Cliff, I didn't know that about Rilke. I do have a book about the imagination, though, which mentions him: I need to dig that out again. I go through periods of buffet-style reading and then I forget things or forget where I read them or heard them (like with Mitchell's Gilgamesh).
#25: That is an amazing story. But maybe I shouldn't be surprised that one's spirit might be housed in the transplanted heart. It's quite something to think about.
In my experience, Rhys's short stories can be easily and cheaply picked up at used book stores. (Please insert me starting to browse through the collection, getting a little lost, then shaking myself with the reminder that I really do have to finish those library books that are about to be due.) Yes, definitely worthwhile.
We're certainly doing better than in the Middle Ages, when murder was basically a way of life for the aristocratic classes.
We all would benefit from reading Dr. Jill Bolte Taylor's My Stroke of Insight.