Tuesday, May 28, 2013

I'm still fighting this cold, which has now dwindled into an up-all-night cough, and I was out of the house for most of yesterday, a combination of factors that accounts for no Monday letter to you. First, I watched my son run a 4 x 800 relay at the Penobscot Valley Conference track-and-field championships, and then I bought a dozen duck eggs and a pickling-cucumber plant, and then I came home and did battle with the field that was once a lawn, and then, finally, after I was inside and had made dinner and had celebrated with the boy about his team's victory ("Mom! I haven't been on a winning team since second grade!"), I lay on the couch and watched a chunk of Sergei Bondarchuk's 1965 Russian version of War and Peace, which is rather like a giant Burton-Taylor extravaganza shot in slow motion under water. Also, there is something very odd about the translation approach. Sometimes the dialogue is dubbed into English, sometimes there are subtitles, and sometimes there's no translation at all . . . and these shifts frequently happen in the middle of a single character's speech. In other words, the movie is perfect for a head cold. It was either that or 70s A-Team reruns.

Today I'm back to editing, and the house will be emptied of boys, which will be a novelty. These days there's a lot of action in my cottage, and a lot of food consumption. Two loaves of bread last a day and a half, if I'm lucky. Just call me the Constant Baker.

Christopher's comments on Sunday's quotation post are interesting. There's a scene in A. S. Byatt's Possession that, in certain ways, mirrors the tale he posits about the missing books. I've often suspected that Byatt borrowed Emily Dickinson as a model for certain angles of her character Christabel LaMotte, though there are also many elements of Christina Rossetti and Elizabeth Barrett . . . and Randolph Ash is quite Browning-like.


Christopjer said...

Thanks for being so uncritical, Dawn, but then that's you, up to a point.

I read A.S.Byatt's Possession when it first came out, and of course that's the coffin, but I don't remember the details of similar writing, unlike Eliot and Trollope. I also love but don't remember Ian McKewan.

The Dickinson is more Peacock, isn't it?

Dawn Potter said...

Not sure what you mean by "uncritical." What's to criticize? I like what you shared. A. S. Byatt is one of my models/antagonists. I read everything she writes and then stew about it, sometimes pleasurably, sometimes not.

And I don't understand your Dickinson-Peacock reference.

Christopher said...

Were classicists, we're old-fashioned. That's all, Dawn.

Though it's all a bit of a joke.