Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Melville shorts

No, not the new fashion craze, I've been thinking about Melville's short stories. I'll be honest, I never read the entire Moby Dick though I was required to, twice, during my education. I skimmed several chapters, and I've long since forgotten most of the plot.

Two of Melville's short stories have stuck with me over the years, however. Bartleby the Scrivener and The Paradise of Bachelors and the Tartarus of Maids. (Yeah, that poor Bartleby - in 2006 he'd be doing data entry, but at least he'd be able to goof off on occasion and surf the web or check his horoscope to break up the monotony. He'd have a nice screen saver instead of a view of a brick wall.) But more I've been thinking of The Tartarus of Maids and a poem someone had brought into a group 2 years ago which I can't find and it's driving me nuts. I can't even remember a line from it, just the images: young women working in a mill with wet cloth. It was a short piece but striking and memorable enough for it to stand out among the hundreds of poems I've read since.

I remember who brought it in for the group, now, where's her email address????

More to follow...

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