Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Christianity in space

“[T]he vast astronomical distances … are God’s quarantine regulations …”

So says the narrator in C.S. Lewis’ Perelandra.

I’m really bogging down in this book. While the previous novel in Lewis’ space trilogy was a decent adventure story this one is turning into a theo-psychological argument. Not exactly boring because Lewis writes well. But I am wondering why I’m bothering. Oh yeah. Because for years as a teen I shopped at a comic store called Perelandra and I’m still curious what that was all about. I’m not convinced I’ll really have an answer when I get to the last page. It’s just Christianity in space?

I remember one of Perelandra’s owners had the last name: Christ. He insisted Christ rhymed with ‘wrist’ – rather than ‘priced’, say.

“He knew now why the old philosophers had said there is no such thing as chance,” says the Perelandra narrator referring to the main character’s name – Ransom. Christ was a ransom, too?

Monday, April 12, 2010

“It’s awful to read his complete works.”

“Yes, the poet can say only a little and says one and the same thing all the time. It’s awful to read his complete works. It’s awful, you think, how much can one go on about one and the same thing!”

-- Evgeny Kharitonov, from “Tears on Flowers"

source: Crossing Centuries: the new generation in Russian poetry, edited by John High, et al.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

“a splended time for poetry”

Evgeny Bunimovich on the change in fortune for poets in Russia after the fall of the Soviet government:

“I think this is a splendid time for poetry. The prestige which writers formerly enjoyed has largely disappeared, and the prestige of poets most of all. As a result, only those who truly need to write poetry still do so. Today you can’t build a career as a poet, or gratify your ego, or make a political statement. You produce a text, and that’s it.”

Yup, no more poets filling stadiums or being celebrated for standing up to the propaganda. Just you & your poem. Kinda like here.

source: Crossing Centuries: the new generation in Russian poetry, edited by John High, et al.