Thursday, 31 March 2011

A Red Letter Day

Red Letter days were originally the highlighted saints' days in religious calendars, but I'm nicking it for literature. Today seems quite a popular one for Canonical (see what I did there) births and deaths: Descartes, Gogol and Fowles were born on this day, while Donne, Charlotte Brontë and Anne Frank died (or were killed) today. If I could suspend my disbelief for a second, imagine the conversations they'd be having in heaven… Though I suspect Fowles is headed for The Other Place. Donne, I imagine, would be explaining to the prettier angels why he wrote sexual religious poetry and religious sex poetry.

Gogol, of course, wrote Dead Souls, a weird and hugely funny sort-of-novel which uses Dante's Inferno as an intertext to examine the lives of Russian serfs (in part), so imagining his afterlife isn't too offensive.

In reality of course, they live on (or not) through their books. That should be enough. Unfortunately, my memorial will be this blog: lots of lo-fi and some cheap shots at a mediocre MP.

O Tempora, O Mores

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