Magical Realism, Writing, Fiction, Politics, Haiku, Books

sábado, mayo 17, 2008

Authentic American Literary Experience Available

My fence needs painting. Badly. It's a long, white picket fence, shorter than the famous one and about as long. I remember the story:
"Like it? Well, I don't see why I oughtn't to like it. Does a boy get a chance to whitewash a fence every day?"

That put the thing in a new light. Ben stopped nibbling his apple. Tom swept his brush daintily back and forth -- stepped back to note the effect -- added a touch here and there -- criticised the effect again -- Ben watching every move and getting more and more interested, more and more absorbed. Presently he said:

"Say, Tom, let me whitewash a little."
Tom Sawyer, Chapter 2

Unfortunately, savoring the story doesn't get the fence painted. And, guess what? I don't want to paint it. I really don't. So today, after I weed the peas, I'm thinking about making a flier to hang at the local high school. Or the elementary school. Or in town. It'll say something grandiose, something like, "Authentic American Literary Experience Available" at the top. It'll have the photo above. It'll have the quote. And it'll then say, "The more the merrier." I'll contemplate whether the "experience" is devalued by offering to pay. Probably. Maybe it's preserved by grotesque underpayment. I will think about this.

Next week, I'll probably have to begin to paint it myself.

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