recommended by 3 out of 5 princes of tides

Now, I will add the text of an abortive attempt to record my thoughts as I worked through James Dickey’s out-of-print second novel, Alnilam, as posted to a very casual forum that regularly auto-deletes less active topics. I saved what I could at the time, but when the thread died I’m afraid I lost my momentum. These are copied and pasted with minimal editing. I imagine I’ll often be very juvenile.

I post them here in the hope that maybe, just maybe, having them squatting on the internet again will inspire me to tackle the book again, which followed me to Alaska this past summer, and now across the sea to Chiang Mai where I promptly bought a busload of other books.


That’s right, his out-of-print second novel that no one slobbers over even as they secrete huge volumes of saliva all over Deliverance and To the White Sea.



Yeah so it opens with an exhaustive description of a recently blind man stumbling out of his guest house in the winter to defecate in the snow, almost getting lost, and stumbling back.

There is a dog.

The man lost his eyesight to diabetes, gone undiagnosed for years.

Dickey obviously really enjoys writing from the blind man’s point of view, and his prose is appropriately poetic, but never hard to follow. After the defecation, though, he lapses into FOUR MONTHS LATER, and proceeds to really enjoy writing about how it feels to live with constant high bloodsugar while running a pool. This drags more than the painstaking analysis of the blind man’s picking his way into the outdoors to relieve himself process, which concerns me.

I’m not sure about these 768 pages, selectbutton.

Now I will shower and go to a party MORE ALNILAM AS IT IT HAPPENS.


~ by ironcupshrug on 11/23/2009.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: