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Why I hate Henry James

February 17, 2015

I have tried to read Henry James for years. I have fgound the people who like him are usually cerebral people who lack affectionate skills. They usually love anagrams, puzzles, crosswords, and word games. I can;t stand those activities, I see them as time-wasters that are really drugs. And most of the time they like authors I can’t stand. Guys like Pynchon. Maybe I don[t like these people and writers because I’m not that dumb and don;t need them to understand the ultimate truths and paradoxes flying about the woods and landing on my had that I can;t swat. Oh, wait, I have to go upstairs, I forgot to have my cofee. Be back. Sorry, I write in real time.

 

Okay, I’m back, after chasing the cats away from the kitchen counter. When I open a book and look at the prose I have to feel blood coursing through it. With Henry James I on ly see a spinal cord. None of the organs are connected. The prose just feels leaden, and squeezed out of any seat, moisture or fruit. The brain doing backward somersaults of perception. When I try to get four or five sentences into the first page, I feel like the covers of the book are closing in on me –you know, like when a hero is trapped in a room and the walls get closer and closer. I’m thinking how can I escape?

 

I realize I close the book and run away.

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