Donald Antrim is determined to come to terms, at last, with the ghost of his old man, & other friends and relations

Donald Antrim’s My Eliot, the author’s first novel in more than 20 years, in which our protagonist “Donald Antrim” sits down to read his late father’s treatise on T.S. Eliot, determined to come to terms, at last, with the ghost of his old man … book rights sold to Random House

from here

Her father is the former Newsweek correspondent Curtis (Bill) Pepper, and her mother is the controversial sculptor (and social steamroller) Beverly Pepper. “Jorie is an amalgam of the two,” one New York editor told me.

that’s poet Jorie Graham, from here

Mother Teresa once rang the doorbell looking for her husband Bill.

that’s the doorbell of Beverly Pepper, Jorie Graham’s mum, from here

When she was a little girl in Brooklyn, so did the Dodgers.

from the same Beverly Pepper piece, here

Cole married his American wife, Elizabeth Lewis, in December 1989.

that’s Lloyd Cole, from here

In 1987, Tim and his wife Sarah played along with lurid tabloid reports that they were incestuous siblings.

that’s Tim Smith of the Cardiacs, here

American poetry is full of ‘Oh, poor me.’ Jorie doesn’t do that. I think she’s carved out such a powerful œuvre that it’s unignorable.

that’s Jorie Graham again, from here

‘Your normal reading habits, which have to do with the follow-through of plot, aren’t going to work here. So let’s go and see what else we can read with.’ says Jorie Graham, followed by

Can We Decipher a Whale’s First Sounds?

from here

Cole stays in the creep — that space of unresolved circumstances and emotions that has room for great discomfort and some hope, some beauty.

that’s Lloyd Cole again, again from here and it finds it’s way into this list by way of the creep

Or is it simply the onslaught of another dangerous mood?

from here

A screenshot of her comment rippled through social media and many fans, especially those in her sizable LGBTQ fanbase, were met with bewilderment, anger, and disappointment.

although they weren’t met by her bewilderment, anger and disappointment, that’s Róisín Murphy, from here

on which subject, the bewilderment, anger and disappointment of fans, I’ve almost had it with Claire Dederer’s book, Monsters: A Fan’s Dilemma, had it after statements like this,

Hemmingway wrote in Death in the Afternoon: “Bullfighting is the only art in which the artist is in danger of death.” (Makes wanking gesture with hand.)

had it not because of its disrespect for Hemmingway but Dederer’s disrespect for herself.


A.L. Kennedy’s book On Bullfighting starts with the writer about to jump. Then from a neighbouring building she hears some crap song and decides that that cheesy mor tune can’t be the soundtrack for her going out. The telephone rings. It’s her publisher offering her an assignment to write on bullfighting. She goes, with Federico García Lorca as her guide.

La casada infiel

Y que yo me la llevé al río
creyendo que era mozuela,
pero tenía marido.
Fue la noche de Santiago
y casi por compromiso.
Se apagaron los faroles
y se encendieron los grillos.
En las últimas esquinas
toqué sus pechos dormidos,
y se me abrieron de pronto
como ramos de jacintos.
El almidón de su enagua
me sonaba en el oído,
como una pieza de seda
rasgada por diez cuchillos.
Sin luz de plata en sus copas
los árboles han crecido,
y un horizonte de perros
ladra muy lejos del río.
Pasadas las zarzamoras,
los juncos y los espinos,
bajo su mata de pelo
hice un hoyo sobre el limo.
Yo me quité la corbata.
Ella se quitó el vestido.
Yo el cinturón con revólver.
Ella sus cuatro corpiños.
Ni nardos ni caracolas
tienen el cutis tan fino,
ni los cristales con luna
relumbran con ese brillo.
Sus muslos se me escapaban
como peces sorprendidos,
la mitad llenos de lumbre,
la mitad llenos de frío.
Aquella noche corrí
el mejor de los caminos,
montado en potra de nácar
sin bridas y sin estribos.
No quiero decir, por hombre,
las cosas que ella me dijo.
La luz del entendimiento
me hace ser muy comedido.
Sucia de besos y arena
yo me la llevé del río.
Con el aire se batían
las espadas de los lirios.
Me porté como quien soy.
Como un gitano legítimo.
Le regalé un costurero
grande de raso pajizo,
y no quise enamorarme
porque teniendo marido
me dijo que era mozuela
cuando la llevaba al río.
by Leonard Cohen after the poem by Lorca 

The Night of Santiago 
And I was passing through 
So I took her to the river 
As any man would do 

She said she was a virgin 
That wasn’t what I’d heard 
But I’m not the Inquisition 
I took her at her word 

And yes she lied about it all 
Her children and her husband 
You were meant to judge the world 
Forgive me but I wasn’t 

The lights went out behind us 
The fireflies undressed 
The broken sidewalk ended 
I touched her sleeping breasts 

They opened to me urgently 
Like lilies from the dead 
Behind a fine embroidery 
Her nipples rose like bread 

Her petticoat was starched and loud 
And crushed between our legs 
It thundered like a living cloud 
Beset by razor blades

No silver light to plate their leaves 
The trees grew wild and high 
A file of dogs patrolled the beach 
To keep the night alive 

We passed the thorns and berry bush 
The reeds and prickly pear 
I made a hollow in the earth 
To nest her dampened hair 

Then I took off my necktie 
And she took off her dress 
My belt and pistol set aside 
We tore away the rest 

Her skin was oil and ointments 
And brighter than a shell 
Your gold and glass appointments 
Will never shine so well 

Her thighs they slipped away from me 
Like schools of startled fish 
Though I’ve forgotten half my life 
I still remember this 

That night I ran the best of roads 
Upon a mighty charger 
But very soon I’m overthrown 
And she’s become the rider 

Now as a man I won’t repeat 
The things she said aloud 
Except for this my lips are sealed 
Forever and for now

And soon there’s sand in every kiss 
And soon the dawn is ready 
And soon the night surrenders 
To a daffodil machete 

I gave her something pretty 
And I waited ’til she laughed 
I wasn’t born a gypsy 
To make a woman sad 

I didn’t fall in love. Of course 
It’s never up to you 
But she was walking back and forth 
And I was passing through 

When I took her to the river 
In her virginal apparel 
When I took her to the river 
On the Night of Santiago 

And yes she lied about her life 
Her children and her husband 
You were born to get it right 
Forgive me but I wasn’t 

The Night of Santiago 
And I was passing through 
And I took her to the river 
As any man would do