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CONE ZERO / ZENO’S PARADOX / THE INTENTIONAL FALLACY

 

Nemonymous Wikipedia | Nullimmortalis | Megazanthus Press

”The Synchronised Shards of Random Truth & Fiction” — the subtitle of ‘Weirdmonger’ book in 2003.

My 2022 Reviewing Announcement: https://dflewisreviews.wordpress.com/2022/03/02/reviewing-announcement/

THE COP AND THE ANTHEM: O. Henry

Nemonymous Night

“…averted the ignoble fate of the menaced mallard.”

After ‘eleemosynary’ Soapy, of whom we have an image of frayed trousers, received Jack Frost’s warning card, and thus he needs his own ‘hegira’ to what he calls the Island. And he does this by reprehensibly breaking the law several times unsuccessfully enough not to be sent to such a ‘rosy dream’ by any policeman, then magistrate.
Law as philanthropy! The masher cinch. A wishful ‘transplendent’ goal that is hailed to a halt by an anthem from a chance church organ, infusing Soapy with an algorithm of remorseful humiliation moving through the slow motion gears towards a new purpose to obviate the encroaching coldness by more positive means.
Except the “dreadful enchantment” in all the previous fair cops became an unfair one as “a hand laid upon his arm” simply for doing nothin’ at all!
PS: But what about the woman he…

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SALVADOR LATE OR EARLY: Sandra Cisneros

“…the elbows and wrists crisscrossing…”

Probably the greatest vignette of fiction ever! It transcends any prose poem, it even transcends poetry or music. An essence of semantics and phonetics and syntax and the simple ‘look’ of the print evolving into a gestalt of a well-meaning boy who looks after his brothers at school and at home during an otherwise hard life, an even harder life if it were not for the promise of this involving vignette itself that iconises him with our own elbows and wrists crisscrossing, too.

***

Full context of this review: https://dflewisreviews.wordpress.com/2022/04/27/the-penguin-book-of-the-modern-american-short-story/

THE BEGINNING OF A STORY

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THE BEGINNING OF A STORY by ELIZABETH TAYLOR

“Her mouth, without teeth, was a grey cavern. Except for the breathing, she might have been dead.”

“…the beautiful, shocking air of the night.”

“…a smell of stuffiness seemed to drift out through the letter slot in the door.”

“…the dark and eyeless cliffs of the houses.”

If all that — together with the soaping of armpits, the shunting of goods trains, the flowing past of streets like black rivers, the opening out of a future by a young man’s torch and more — represents the beginning of the story, the rest of it must be you and me on this lonely planet ever-beginning, never ending.
Here represented by young Marian (earlier “her fingers in her ears as she read”, later “ her fingers stuck in her ears, or going about with a blank immunity”) and a young man called Ronny, she a lodger, he the landlord’s son, as she reads a book by Mary Elizabeth Braddon in the near darkness and he thinks of his Grandmother’s empty cavern of a mouth in the next room and his own mother easing her into death, while his beery father leers at the ill-fastened blouse of Marian…

Meantime, at the point of death, these young people, almost ‘children’, are sent off to fetch the lady layer-out of corpses, whose letter-slot holds a certain stuffiness, as their romantic future, we assume, opens up with the same torch as earlier dispersed the blackness of the streets. Beautiful fiction for its own sake, as our own shocking, ill-fastened future today closes in?

***

Full context of this review: https://dflewisreviews.wordpress.com/2022/04/27/complete-short-stories-elizabeth-taylor/

THE WAY WE LIVE NOW: Susan Sontag

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“….it’s not like that, it’s not the way you imagine, he’s not judging people or wondering about their motives, he’s just happy to see his friends.[…] it’s rather beautiful, I can’t help thinking, this utopia of friendship you’ve assembled around him…”

An unnamed man at the time of the story is a gestalt as evolved from the coordinates or cells or selves of his friends’s reported speech to each other like a skein or cobweb of existence and he is dying of AIDS where such spreading by sexuality as a ‘chain of death’ makes one imagine being in the London Blitz; are you the next to be hit? An ongoing picnic of people morphing into a ‘maroon party’ around the single metaphorical sickbed. No restrictions on visitors, in pairs or not. Any diary a relic for the future… and St Sebastian carried his own skin… all of us side effects to each other. 

“I’m playing leapfrog with myself, he is reported to have said,…”

And it reminds me of the then future’s COVID, but how would the gestalt have changed by that dint, if visitor restrictions applied strictly without hope of a party gate? From a maximum picnic party-skein to a marooned cancerous lockdown nub?

“Oh, no, said Lewis, I can’t stand it, wait a minute, I can’t believe it, are you sure, I mean are they sure, […] it seems impossible that someone wouldn’t have called Lewis; and perhaps Lewis did know, was for some reason pretending not to know already,…”

My writing’ getting more spidery. But, still, it still shows I am still here. Blood transfusions may be contaminated, though. As may be words filtered into your eyes.

This story’s words “everybody is worried about everybody now” have turned today into a selfish leapfrog inside the head?

***

Full context of this review: https://dflewisreviews.wordpress.com/2022/04/27/the-penguin-book-of-the-modern-american-short-story/#comment-24969

SILVER BLAZE: Arthur Conan Doyle

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“A child would know Silver Blaze with his white forehead and his mottled off-foreleg.”

…this famous Sherlock Holness story, too, similarly known by us all, even the odd child here and there. Watson is a sort of child to be tutored, but there is no sure lock against such a child, even though he is not omniscient in this narrative memoir because Sherlock’s ‘whisper’ — carrying the plot with it — was not heard by Watson, and thus unheard by ourselves, yet Watson is no modernistic ‘unreliable narrator’ either! He is astute enough to lay clues for my ‘gestalt real-time reviewing’ process, now primed by tackling these Sherlocked works, having practised unlocking such literature when earlier applying this reviewing process to all the Father Brown stories (HERE). And that thought now gives me a clue, in the flow of my pondering, as to the nature of Silas Brown, perhaps, and, consequently, of his boss Lord Backwater, despite their names and the Watson-context implying otherwise! Whatever the value of a half-crown bribe.

I will not further re-rehearse all the clues laid by Watson’s memoir, for fear of spoilers, but I shall merely list them here, like listing the contents of someone’s pocket, as this ‘story’ does, my own list comprising the speed of the train taking our heroes to Dartmoor, the nature of the Somomy stock, a carried mutton dish, a ‘penang-lawyer’ stick weighted by lead, the town of Tavistock being in the middle of a huge circle, the arguable red herring of gypsies in the area, the ‘cataract knife’, a wax Vesta under the matting, a lady’s ostrich-feather trimmed dress, lame sheep with a ‘singular epidemic’, a bill for £37 15s, the nicking of something subcutaneously, arrival at Clapham Junction, and much else.

I shall further list (as the quotes below) what I myself found important as clues, clues particularly to my own involvement in sharing my thoughts with at least one other person (a person perhaps not unlike Watson) who is reading this unofficial review of mine, but with any horse in it being called Desborough notwithstanding. 

“Because I made a blunder, my dear Watson – which is, I am afraid, a more common occurrence than anyone would think who only knew me through your memoirs.”

“….for nothing clears up a case so much as stating it to another person,…”

“Though most of the facts were familiar to me, I had not sufficiently appreciated their relative importance, nor their connection to each other.”

“See the value of imagination…”

“That is the advantage of being unofficial. I don’t know whether you observed it,…”

“faker like him has many a dodge”

Not forgetting, though, Watson’s ‘touching the arm’ of a ‘day-dreaming’ Sherlock in this ‘story’, sure to unlock or trigger something important.
But, each time they are resurrected by the modern consciousness as reliable reality from fiction, which of them wins the race to truth in the end?

***

Full Penguin anthology context of this review: https://nemonymous123456.wordpress.com/the-penguin-books-of-the-british-short-story/

My recent review of A SCANDAL IN BOHEMIA: https://dflewisreviews.wordpress.com/2022/06/27/a-scandal-in-bohemia-sir-arthur-conan-doyle/

Out At Elbows

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Robert Louis Stevenson: The Body Snatcher

“…if you begin, you must keep on beginning; that’s the truth. No rest for the wicked.”

“We must do something for you, Fettes; I fear you are out at elbows; but we must see to that –“

The meeting of a doctor called Wolfe and another man called Fettes, both in older or decrepit age, particularly the diselbowed Fettes, meeting by chance in a pub when the doctor is called to an emergency there. And one of the co-tipplers or topers there later put together his own gestalt of ghoulery that he ‘wormed’ piecemeal from Fettes about the mutual past of the two men who had just faced each other again, for a nonce, in the small space between the pub’s landing and exit…

“…the wide oak staircase landed almost in the street; there was room for a Turkey rug and nothing more between the threshold and the last round of the descent; […] …and it was a surprising contrast to see our parlour sot, bald, dirty, pimpled, and robed in his old camlet cloak, confront him at the bottom of the stairs. […] The scene was over like a dream; but the dream had left proofs and traces of its passage.”

And the wormed-out tale is of the Resurrection Man or the Body Snatcher…

“From such a scene he would return to snatch another hour or two of slumber,…”

The graphically gruesome accounts are never to be forgotten, in that small grey area between the exhumations for the students’ dissecting rooms and the sheer glory of gory, the two men’s greed, their growing amorality and acceptance of such deeds in that niche of space where evil lurks, and coffin lids rattle. Fettes is at first fazed by the arrival of a young woman’s body who was fit enough for him to be talking to only the day before, but thereafter he is ineluctably inured in his own inner creature’s future foxearth, I deem. Then more than just fazed by a man called Gray who ends this story with that space between black and white, a space smaller than ever, with, arguably, a Swiftian ironic reference to the famous book that Gray had recently published! And someone called Richardson had Gray’s head to dissect. But who is Mr K——?
The rifling of bodies couched in language as rape would be — in contrast to the implied love between snatcher and snatched — the latter’s head touchingly laid upon the former’s shoulders…
What are you, lion or lamb? Only the wicked cannot rest. The rest is nothing.

***

Full context of this review: https://nemonymous123456.wordpress.com/the-penguin-books-of-the-british-short-story/

A Masterpiece of Passion

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Street Musicians of Prague – Karel Stroff

PET MILK: Stuart Dybek

At least three faces above seem, from their astonished or leering expressions, to indicate that the front of stage figure is flashing! A painting (entitled as above) is a significant prop (“The reflections of her beauty startled me.”) in the following story’s plot…

“Pet milk was the cream.”

Squirts of condensed milk as cream that are tactilely described, with touching homeland nostalgia, by this story of a young Czech couple in Chicago…where wireless stations…
“…the Greek station instead, or the Spanish, or the Ukrainian. In Chicago, where we lived, all the incompatible states of Europe were pressed together down at the staticky right end of the dial.”

Later…
“…repeated explosions, blooming in kaleidoscopic clouds through the layer of heavy cream.”

And the story’s climax of their copulating, as an inescapable urge of sexual and national frustration, on a train (“She was moving her hips to pin us to each jolt of the train.”) that resulted in others, with the train flashing by and then halting in a station seeing their intimacy, including by himself as a schoolboy in his native land… 

“…but that arrested wave stayed with me. It was as if I were standing on that platform, with my schoolbooks…”

“If he failed to float the cream, we’d get that one free.”

“It was the first time I’d ever had the feeling of missing someone I was still with.”

“‘To Europe!’ I replied, and we clunked shells.”

A masterpiece of passion!

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Full context of this review: https://dflewisreviews.wordpress.com/2022/04/27/the-penguin-book-of-the-modern-american-short-story/

PS: note the elbow sticking out in 3-D!

“sculpture by random”

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LEVIATHAN by Lucy Frost

‘; in the sculpture by random explosion we call “evolution”—‘

A truly astonishing … prose poem? technical or cosmic description? fiction story? absolute truth story? — about what I have been pondering without any help from such a creative work as this, except now this description of an entity-of-us somehow gives meaning to my own GESTALT real-time reviewing over the last 14 years while collecting these cells as story-or-truth words! — Also, there is this work’s own “connectivity” to the previous ‘stories’ above in the Vastarium, thus creating the culmination of their ‘evolution’ as natation and natalism, such cells as selves swimming in the abyss we call self. The hinged together parts of our body or bodies, too.

***

Full context of above review: https://dflewisreviews.wordpress.com/2022/06/10/vastarien-vol-5-issue-1/