Monday, 22 December 2008

To the Lighthouse

Literature is strewn with the wreckage of men who have minded beyond reason the opinions of others.
Virginia Woolf, A Room of One's Own (1929)

As we parted, not knowing if or when we’ll meet again, I slipped into your hands Virginia Woolf’s To the Lighthouse. Perhaps because I hoped Lily Briscoe would be there, as always in the end, to shed light on at least your vision, if not mine. After the last goodbye you instantly flew away to your world of dreams while I slowly walked back to reality.

Some six months later we met again at some obscure halfway. You began by casually dismissing Ms. Woolf as “different” and then proceeded to decimate me with words. Your hopelessly inadequate words, sagging beneath the burden of venom and blind rage, tried to soar across the abyss. But alas, failed miserably. For, I could look straight to the lighthouse standing under the bright sun on a golden, cloudless day. And you could never free yourself from your darkening chamber of words, just words and their seductive echo.

So, now even after all these months, whenever I look to the lighthouse thinking, “About life, about death; about (sometimes even) Mrs Ramsay” I wonder how hard it would have been for you to simply say, “I did not like the book.”

(Afterthoughts on books: part 1)

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