I’ve been on a Cormac McCarthy reading kick since he passed away – The Passenger and Stella Maris and The Orchard Keeper and now Suttree.
Of these, my favorites were The Passenger and Stella Maris, but Suttree and The Orchard Keeper are also worth a read if you like McCarthy.
All of them are refreshingly grave compared to almost everything else I have read in the past few years. Wake you up. Like a cold shower.
Notes and quotes…
4660 No one cares. It’s not important.
That’s where you’re wrong my friend. Everything’s important. A man lives his life, he has to make that important. Whether he’s a small town county sheriff or the president. Or a busted out bum. You might even understand that some day. I dont say you will. You might.
12865 A clear night over south Knoxville. The lights of the bridge bobbed in the river among the small and darkly cobbled isomers of distant constellations. Tilting back in his chair he framed questions for the quaking ovoid of lamplight on the ceiling to pose to him:
Supposing there be any soul to listen and you died tonight?
They’d listen to my death.
No final word?
Last words are only words.
You can tell me, paradigm of your own sinister genesis construed by a flame in a glass bell.
I’d say I was not unhappy.
You have nothing.
It may be the last shall be first.
Do you believe that?
What do you believe?
I believe that the last and the first suffer equally. Pari passu.
It is not alone in the dark of death that all souls are one soul.
Of what would you repent?
One thing. I spoke with bitterness about my life and I said that I would take my own part against the slander of oblivion and against the monstrous facelessness of it and that I would stand a stone in the very void where all would read my name. Of that vanity I recant all.
- Read Suttree by Cormac McCarthy