Tuesday, January 25, 2011

from Nicholas Mosley's Accident

All caring was risky: you exposed yourself. It was better to be like this than the other. I was justifying myself. With the sun out. In the summer. (26)

We remember in envy, not regret; what we are now needing the past for its colour, tolerance. We know all this. The dangerous men are those with no memory; the ancient babies. Wisdom is a bit of cloth with the warp and woof breaking. The dust settling in the air; the people below choking. (67)

Charlie said "Shall we play tennis? There are millions of things happening in the world! People are starving. Murdering. Seeing visions." (74)

It might be better if we ruined ourselves. (80)

When you are too much on your own you have a feeling of profusion, of intensity. I had become obsessed with this split between our public face and our private helplessness. The men on television. The brain in the Oxford frigidaire. (88)

...the people in the courtyard began to regroup in a protective way against the stranger: a chromosome formed of things that were not alive ut which acted as if they were: the group, aristocrats. A survival of the fittest. The men had small heads and hands; the girls were smooth-bottomed cylinders with little taps and dials at the top. (88)

The words came out. There was painted furniture, sweetness, shadow. Her long and lovely back. This had happened. We make a god of it. Defeat. I am almost gutted. Let me become that thing, empty, floating past the walls of crumbling buildings. No more a person. Quick. Let me remember it. (105)

I held her. Her eyes on the edge of the precipice. Horses. The wind in fir trees. We were going deep. I thought--I am no good at this. This is what matters. (120)

"This is what I think about, what I think is important. Either you turn into some sort of gutted thing, automaton, or you have to become involved with pain and birth again, the roots, and all that nonsense. I keep on saying this. But I do feel this sort of crack-up, everything exploding, we're one person one moment and another person the next; no continuity because no illusion. I'm a different person with you than I am with Charlie or in college. I don't know if this is good or bad--" (145)

I was about to step into the car. I was about to smash something. I would pull up the stones with my fingers. I said "Thank you Mrs.--" I couldn't remember her name. I sat behind the driving wheel. I could not drive. I could not get the car into gear. I would drive it into the wall. Fast. Now this was the moment. Quietly. (171)

Also... from the Afterword (by Steven Weisenberger):
Mosley too is suspicious of received knowledge in all its effects on everyday experience. Still more significantly he is suspicious of how our everyday experiences are rationalized, plotted, from the moment they slide away from us. Stephen [the main character, the "I"] claims: "You live in the present, which does not exist; it exists in memory." And Accident argues that what is "real" is not a text--for it is essentially non-narrative, accidental. But Mosley adds the priviso that as "reality" becomes past it is accessible only as a "text"--when it is known through episodic memory, in story-telling.


I want Nicholas Mosley to be my literary daddy. Or something. To Shane McCrae I will forever be in debted for introducing me to this author. Nothing excites me more than to have a new favorite writer. Especially someone with soo many books.

No comments: