8 thoughts on “HoL 6

  1. XXI

    Pages 491 – 495

    “I light matches, too.”

    “Turn every fucking word to ash.”

    My grandmother’s cigarette, as she did sewing with it in her mouth, always had a fragile teetering growing tube of ash at its end, till it fell off. The Truant part of this bookhouse now takes over, having shed its disguise as a footnote, and obtained an intrinsic element in the gestalt, “As if today not only can this book not be destroyed, it also cannot be blamed.” Not blamed here for Lude’s death, Navidson’s freewheeling mountain bike having become a motorcycle crashing into a wall, nor for failing to climb a literary Everest, nor for the insufferable Gdańsk Man elements as an arguably disposable part of the plot about to fall off. Weaknesses are intrinsic to the gestalt of Art as well as strengths, though. The matches themselves are charred but the bookhouse remains.
    The world in these pages becomes an intrinsic Truant, now present rather than absent-without-leave from the schoolhouse, and literally represents the co-vivid nightmare of our times today. Impossible to stop. “I let it stretch inside me like an endless hallway.” Do simply re-read the last two paragraphs of the part headed “October 25, 1998 (Not yet dawn)”. Remember this book started with Zampanò in lockdown. Unless I am mistaken….or have been infected by my own confirmation-bias!

  2. Pages 495 – 521

    Truant’s HoLy equivalent to Molly’s Monologue continues, dated as in a diary as if it wasn’t eroding into today’s co-vivid nightmare. ‘Terror has no Diary’, as Charles Maturin wrote in Melmoth the Wanderer, and here Truant seems to wander in his mind and memory and a lost future’s premonition , from place to place, from trying to contact dead Lude towards Thumper’s washing machine, after breaking various separate lockdowns to find his mother, wandering finally to where he was a TV’s vanishing dot of an intubated child that arguably never survived…after finding this very bookhouse in a music club, with a presumption of thousands, even millions, reading it, a book, though, with perhaps a print-run of one , or simply unique, itself still unburnt but scrawled with my own marginalia of study and scrutiny….me again being the old man who has very nearly reached his Z point. Tree to Ash. And back again? The healing of literature? Excerpts below …Cat in El’s chance, et al.

    “More houses. And there in the middle, on the side of the road, one dead cat. […]
    Nearby another cat, a great big gray thing, watches. Runs off when I approach. […]
    No one here has heard of Zampanò.
    No one here has heard of the Navidson’s.
    I’ve found no Ash Tree Lane.
    Months of travel and I’ve still found no relief. […]
    I can’t help thinking there’s a tumor eating away the lining of my stomach. […]
    A quick re-read of all this and I begin to see I’m tracing the wrong history. Virginia may have meant a great deal to Zampanò’s imagination. It doesn’t to mine. […]
    Dreams getting worse. Usually in nightmares you see what you’re scared of. Not in my case. […] Well for one thing, you’re not sure if you were dreaming or not. […]
    Back in LA. Went to my storage unit and retrieved the book. […]
    They had discussed the footnotes […] virtually every one marked, stained and red-lined with inquiring and I thought frequently inspired thoughts. […]
    It’s going to be alright. It’s going to be alright. […]
    The book is burning. At last. […] as each character twists into ash. […]
    Of course there always will be darkness but I realise now something inhabits it. Historical or not. Sometimes it seems like a cat,… […]
    Dr. Nowell’s team immediately follows up, intubating the baby and providing bag mask ventilation, all of it coming together in under a minute as they rush him to an ICU… […]”

  3. BEWARE SPOILERS

    XXII, XXIII, EXHIBITS, APPENDIX I

    “Another example of how the mind, any mind, consistently seeks to impose itself upon the abyss.”

    Re-reading and publicly empiricalling this book, now, in my old age, are examples of my own such consistency, I suppose, as later, tellingly, in these sections, Zampanò in his lockdown (“Not only did you end up here, you are going to die here too!”) also says…

    “…and I would like to think I know something more because of my age. Let us read something.”

    And, as footnoted away from Z:

    “Passion has little to do with euphoria and everything to do with patience.”

    This gestalt review site has long been sub-headed ‘The passion of the reading moment.’ And ‘A Fearless Faith in Fiction.’

    FA20EEF3-0FE8-4E2A-B2F4-41FE29CB681BMeanwhile, we reach the poignant discovery and rescue by mastectomy-prone Karen of Navidson by her bravely stepping into that void, that abyss, this bookhouse, toward an arguably happy ending. This is literature’s possibly greatest ending, whatever is still to follow next, literary as well as with all its explicit Halloween fiction offshoots.

    One section here I will draw particular attention to, for the sake of the Sot-Weed Factor, is the song of Quesada and Molino, and the reference to “shallop”. Perhaps one of the many shallops in which Ebenezer sailed?
    Please read this bit and absorb its implications with the history of tobacco…
    And is that a shield of the ‘salvages’ from the Sot-Weed Factor?

    “Forgive me please for including this. An old man’s mind is just as likely to wander as a young man’s, but…”

    • The rest of this first Appendix contains the actual Song of Quesada and Molino as a missing blank and photocopied images plus Z’s poems, all of which that may be fed into the gestalt, if one has the ‘darkest power of patience’!

    • The two final appendices, too, including letters from Truant’s mother to him, some crazeee some with wise gratuitousness, plus various quotes from famous authors or books over the centuries including from the Battle of Maldon. And much more.
      All grist to the gestalt.
      end

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