[ilds] The solace of such work. . . .and truth

slighcl slighcl at wfu.edu
Sat Sep 15 17:45:20 PDT 2007

> On 9/15/2007 8:24 PM, william godshalk wrote:
>> Okay, let us talk truth. I'm puzzled about the meaning of truth in 
>> general. But, when we talk about "truth" in literature what does that 
>> mean? Literature presents itself as fiction, not as the real thing. 
>> So in what ways can a fiction be truth?
I suspect Durrell is too canny to allow us to pin him down.  "/Art like 
life is an open secret/."  If we could handle the thing itself, it would 
not be Truth.

Durrell knew his Pilate as well as you do, Bill.

> Monday escapes destruction.
> Record a vernal afternoon,
> Tea on the lawn with mother,
> A parochial interest in love, etc.
> By the deviation of a hair,
> Is death so far, so far, no further.
> Tuesday: visibility good: and Wednesday.
> A little thunder, some light showers.
> A library book about the universe.
> The absence of a definite self.
> O and already by Friday hazardous,
> To Saturday begins the slow reverse.
> A Saturday without form. By midnight
> The equinox seems forever gone:
> Yet the motionless voice repeating:
> 'Bless the hills in paradigms of smoke,
> Manhair, Maidenhair meeting.'
> But today Sunday. The pit.
> The axe and the knot. Cannot write.
> The monster in its booth.
> At a quarter to one *the mask *repeating:
> *'Truth is what is
> Truth is what is Truth?* 
-- "Paris Journal"
> /Empty your hearts: or fill from a purer source./
> /That what is in men can weep, having eyes:/
> /That what is in *Truth *can speak from the responsible dust/
> /And O the rose grow in the middle of the great world./
-- "In Crisis" (1943)

Charles L. Sligh
Department of English
Wake Forest University
slighcl at wfu.edu

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