Tuesday, 22 June 2010

since i am obsessed with dead earls

It is astonishing that it took doing a bookswap with Mick Jackson to get his book The Underground Man. It's very good, like everyone says. There is a bit in Edinburgh where the Duke is wandering through a medical specimen gallery:
The lasting impression was of my having come upon an awful carnage, the result, perhaps of a terrible explosion, which had scattered its victims into several hundred jars ... here (the label assured me), suspended in alcohol, was a human heart, looking like nothing but a soft black stone.
The Duke then wonders whether it might not be possible 'to take all these marinaded pieces and reintroduce them to one another? To reacreate out of all these miserable, disparate parts one frail but functioning human being.' But of course not.
He has been unwhole for far too long. If he was put back together there would be no making sense of him. He would be an altogether too vinegary man.

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