Monday, September 04, 2006

A good morning round at Impostume Heights!

Number one: a raging head cold kept me off work and plastered sweatily to the mattress till midday, mouthbreathing a soupy stratocumulus of germs and mucus fumes into the long-suffering Mrs Impostume’s face. I awoke refreshed and ready to blog!

Number two: Prague’s most Poisonous Ex-Pat delivered an anti-Scritti sally of such rib-cracking cruelty that I felt I must share it with the Impostume’s devoted readers. Those of a sensitive disposition should perhaps look away now:

Hmm, that fascist propaganda I ordered from those evil born again shits hasn't materialised yet (amongst other things I ordered a DVD on "how to bring up boys")? I suspect they might have cottoned on.

Perhaps another effective way to corrupt white America's youth could be to turn them onto your blogspot, in which as usual you make a fine case for homosexuality, from the sponge's perspective. Nice to see that the years haven't quenched the fire of your transparent longing to be fucked hard up the shitter!
I hardly know anything by Scritti Politti, but after reading interviews with the man came to the conclusion that he was a phenomenally smug smartarse wanker and wholeheartedly yearned to loathe his music. The little I've heard by him was reassuringly vile, some kind of trendy take on reggae that skips like a puff and generally makes you want to puke. No doubt he'd have all kinds of brilliant justifications for it, the poptimist cunt.”

An outrageous slandering of both myself and the adorable Green Gartside who I am now, simply in order to spite P.M.P.E.P. determined to love. I ask you, with friends like these, etc….The Impostume skips off like a puff to…

Number three: via the comments box The Impostume was lead to a brilliant and highly distinctive blog by the name of badzero, a fascinating hybrid of prose, quotes, images and musings and possibly the only blog that manages to have as much time for Lucio Fulci as it does for John Berryman ( as does The Impostume!) It’s fabulous to see a blog that’s as committed to reading and engaging with culture as any other but seems not to have gone down Route 3B (Barthes/Bourroughs/Baudrillard) or be riding the current Zizek/Lacan/Hitchcock hobbyhorse (not that these aren’t both worthwhile approaches, it’s just that there’s a lot of it about) and which isn’t only an opportunity to peddle theories but also to re/introduce readers to the kinds of work that interest/move it. It’s a great experience on several levels and I urge you to check it out!

Number four: The Impostume itself is about to take a distinctly more literary turn (forsooth!) as the below-mentioned muggings attempts to shoehorn, salvage and scrabble a hundred-and twenty-odd thousand words written over a three year period (and interrupted by an entire other novel) into some kind of coherent form. The shears will be coming out for periods of judicious prosodic pruning, fertilizer will be piled on to the budding shoots, the trellis on which the whole shebang hangs strengthened, and much dense undergrowth hacked through etc. A good deal of material extraneous to the final text will no doubt find itself unceremoniously dumped here, The Impostume being (if it hasn’t been so already) a kind of mental compost heap (enough with the strained horticultural metaphors, already!)

We begin with a self-aggrandizing gesture (pants swiftly yanked down for forty whacks from the hubris stick ) in which The Impostume notes the remarkable similarity between a passage from John Banville’s “The Sea” (a Booker winner) and the Impostumes own “Three men, one room.” A pox on those would-be quashers of the Impostumes enthusiasm who dare to suggest that The Impostume has been unduly influenced by Banville over the years and that with his continual trotting out of third-rate Banvillisms some degree of concordance was bound to come about eventually on the infinite monkeys/typwriters principle.

I give you:

The Sea P 185

“No, what I am looking for is a moment of earthly expression. That is it, exactly: I shall be expressed, totally. I shall be delivered, like a noble closing speech. I shall be in a word, said. Has this not always been my aim, is this not, indeed the secret aim of us all, to be no longer flesh but transformed utterly into the gossamer of unsuffering spirit?”

Three men, one room” P26

“Perhaps it is true that each of us has but one thing to express, one perfectly distilled expression of self that we sift through words for all our lives, searching for the magic phrase that will capture us whole and present us to another as an absolute, unmediated truth. We will know ourselves and be known. We will have reached fulfillment. We will have conquered language.”

If John ever dies with a work unfinished and you still need to make good on that publisher's advance, then you know that The Impostume is the man for the job, Mrs Banville.

I’ve finished “The Sea” by the way, one of the few boons of a day in bed. How was it? Maybe, it’s his best work. No doubt I and other members of the Banville appreciation society (current membership: two) can launch into long debates as to whether it tops “Athena”, but it's certainly up there among his best.

Interestingly, Banville said that Irish writers had to choose between Beckett and Joyce and that he had chosen Beckett ( I wonder who English writers have to choose between these days? Hornby or Parsons?) and, he should have added, Stevens. Though obviously the Stevens/Beckett overlap (Cue: but which Beckett? Which Stevens? etc) is particularly great.

Any excuse to put another poem up!

The Snow Man.

One must have a mind of winter
To regard the frost and the boughs
Of the pine-trees crusted with snow;

And have been cold a long time
To behold the junipers shagged with ice,
The spruces rough in the distant glitter

Of the January sun; and not to think
Of any misery in the sound of the wind,
In the sound of a few leaves,

Which is the sound of the land
Full of the same wind
That is blowing in the same bare place

For the listener, who listens in the snow,
And, nothing himself, beholds
Nothing that is not there and the nothing that is.

Wallace Stevens

Right. Time to crack on with some “proper” writing. Or I could just have a look at this recently unearthed collection of short stories by other favourite author, Michel Tournier first…(don’t get me going on him, fer gawd’s sake….)

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