By James Merrill
Following the commonly celebrated Collected Poems, this moment quantity within the sequence of James Merrill's works brings us Merrill as novelist and playwright. simply as in his poems we stumble upon prose items, dramatic discussion, or even a quick play in verse, in his novels and performs we discover the rhythms of his poetry mirrored and given new form.Merrill's first novel, The Seraglio, is a bold roman à clef derived largely from his youth because the cosmopolitan son of Charles Merrill, one in all America's most renowned twentieth-century financiers. Written in a hugely subtle prose that owes anything to Henry James, the publication is a compelling portrait of the posh and treachery swirling round the Southampton seashore residence of an irrepressible family members patriarch, along with his many mistresses and ex-mistresses in attendance, advised from the perspective of his energetic yet bothered son. on the different finish of the narrative spectrum we discover The (Diblos) Notebook,...
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Extra info for Collected Novels and Plays
35 If I suffered from the necessity of producing a systematic interpretation of these objects, I would never take the direction of any of the classical methods of exploring the unconscious, whose reducibility to Oedipus I would, in the best case scenario, presuppose, and would be much more tempted to resort to the somnambulistic method of Objectanalysis as I defined and utilized it in Two Invisible Women Knock on My Door, a Dying Woman Offers Them an Envelope on my Behalf (manuscript, 1944). But my lyrical-subjective and amorousobjective position before the five received objects necessarily prevents me from systematizing the voluptuous vertigo I experience in merely contemplating them and what necessarily is being suggested to me is to maintain and aggravate my vertigo to the fainting point, to allow myself to be passionately drawn towards all the lascivious and chaotic traps which are being set for me.
I am moved to tears by my metallic gaze and the corpse's sneer I sport upon my lips. I am calm and more certain of myself than if I had swallowed a lactating cow. I stroll about with a step of marble, listen with an ear of drums, I scrutinize with an eyeball shooting out of the middle of my forehead like a tree that would tint its leaves its own favorite hue. I challenge myself to a game of marbles, which I extract from my pockets and I am always the winner. Chance is on my side incessantly. It is fruitless to calculate probabilities in matters of chance, chance is nothing if not auspicious.
In light of these atrocious and sudden strikes, veritable alarm signals, the genial embraces that double them suddenly seem suspect to me, and my most urgent necessity alike, projecting the theoretical void that unravels me and paralyzes all of my mental activities, to create around me a corresponding void which, despite its suffocating and unendurable aspect, eliminates the cloying admixture of good and evil furnished to me by the exterior world and which for me is the image of the Oedipal double and the most sinister mask of error.