Monday, August 21, 2006

Books I Can't Forget- Response to David

At around the 3rd or 4th grade I read White Fang by Jack London and it blew all of that Dr. Seuss, Shel Silverstein, Hardy Boys shit out of my ass that was force fed me in elementary school. I still indulge in fantasy and comic books, but not like I used to. Mostly they help me to remember to not take life so seriously.

I have to agree with Catcher in the Rye and Nine Stories. I was about 14 and I let those two books consume my waking life until girls came along a year or two later and took that coveted spot. That Bananfish story invaded the space in between my cells and colored my view of things for a long time. Almost 15 years later I can still see the images of that story, they sneak up on me. I have to read that story soon, but maybe I won't.

I didn't enjoy Blood Meridian like I did No Country for Old Men. But Child of God still haunts me however, like those Bananfish. That guy is somewhere inside me, plundering the mountains and valleys of my soul, looking for dead meat. That book reminds of the Pleco fish in aquariums. They have a dirty job to do, but when they it, the tank sparkles. It's unfair to think of a book in those terms, one so beautifully written. That book just won't quit, it's eating up all of the rotten pieces of me in me that need to go. I need to free up some space it seems.

Another book that has had the same affect on me as White Fang and Child of God has to be 100 Hundred Years of Solitude by Marquez. I read that book about 8 years ago and I fell in love with it. I've only read it once and that seems to be just the right amount. The way that Marquez plays with reality and magic and faith. We all have to believe in something, God, Enlightenment, Capitalism- I choose to believe in the magic of people and what happens when they break through the illusions of this life and come back with a bit of wisdom like MLK, Tupac, Ghandi, Jesus, etc.

Last but not least, I must pay hommage to the Brown Buffalo. Oscar Zeta Acost also came out of nowhere during my late teens and early twenties and kept me company, along with Los Lobos, and kept me sane. Acostas books Autobiography of a Brown Buffalo and Revolt of the Cockroach People remind me that it's ok to have brown skin, speak two languages, and to write about personal stuff no matter how cultural or unappealing I may think it to be to general audiences. When I think of Acosta I think about not giving a fuck and just writing!

1 comment:

david dodd lee said...

Child of God is amazing, but it's so small and perfect. On that desert island you need something you can barely grasp what with all
that time hypothetically on your hands . . .