Friday, April 26, 2013

Hating DH Lawrence

I read a lot. It is one of my long standing, greatest loves.

I read a lot of different things, but predominantly romance. I love reading the Georgian novels by Austin and Burney. I have wandered, delirious, through George Elliot, played with Thackery,  and have a girly crush on Alcott, Ingles-Wilder and Montgomery. 
My love affair with Tolkien ended though, when the rest of the world stole him from me.
For something contemporary, I have journeyed with Bryson, chased after the girl with the dragon tattoo and gone into space with Arthur C.
I happily bathe in chick lit and spent a naughty few nights reading shades of grey.

But I hate D H Lawrence.

I like to explore different styles of writing. I read Lady C back in the 80s when I was still pretty naive. I don't remember enjoying or disliking the book, so I am willing to bet I was using my energy trying not to be shocked instead. Lately, having read a little too much chicklit, I decided it was time to embark on something to give my brain a bit of a work out, and downloaded some DH to my Kindle to have another look.

What a miserable, misanthropic, misogynist.

Mr Lawrence was clearly a sad, bitter, nasty little man.
His characters? The most pathetic, mixed up bunch I have ever seen.

When I read a book, I like to find myself in the characters. If I can't, then I don't believe in them. And I don't believe in his people. They are a repulsive set of hateful people. When they fall in love, they hate all the more intensely  There is no reason for their love. The people he shows us aren't lovable, and the lovers aren't even sure of their attraction. What repulses them is made obvious.

Clearly DH was a very disappointed man if that is what he thinks love is. 

First off the ranks was Sons and Lovers. Having read a bit of Wiki and other DHL references on the net it isn't a stretch to say this book is close to autobiographical. A boy with Mummy Issues. Uncertain sexual bent - probably an damaged, under-expressed homosexual.  But ringing above all was his disgust of women-other-than-mother.

In over 40 years of reading, I have never seen the word 'hate' used so many times in a novel. Does he really hate? He is supposed to be a great novelist, so surely he doesn't resort to childish hyperbole? Does he mean hate in a good way? (?!) And if he is great, surely he wouldn't be relying on that one technique? That one word?

But I am overlooking his other great technique. Repetition. Yes, that's what he likes. Repetition, dreary never ending repetition  And to mix it up he can also be dreadfully repetitive. And when you think you have escaped it, he is going to throw it at you again. 

I have moved on to Women in Love. Sigh. I am blogging now because one of the two sets of couples has just made love and she is hating him intensely because he fell asleep and lays there 'so perfect and immune, in an other-world, whilst she was tormented with violent wakefulness, cast out in the outer darkness'.
I guess she got the shits because he fell asleep and didn't talk to her.

Actually it was probably the  'effluence' that he repeatedly compared her with:
'all his veins were murdered and lacerated, healed softly as life came pulsing in, stealing invisibly in to (sic) him as if it were the all powerful effluence of the sun'

I am hoping it is a kindle-version typo, but it was mighty consistent as it was swiftly followed up by:
'miraculous, soft effluence of her breast'
'healing lymph of her effluence'
'flow of this living effluence'

I am hoping that DH used the word influence. Unfortunately, by this stage in my relationship, the latter seems more fitting with the DHL I have come to a bad way.

Sunday, April 7, 2013

Dog's Appetite for Destruction

So a week later he has eaten:

  • 2 camellias
  • All 3 of the succulents planted in a pot
  • A prostrate wattle
  • the top out of the nandina
Not sure if I am game to go and see what has happened while I slept in this morning.

My shoulder is aching again, having recovered somewhat from last year's near disaster with bursitis. Obviously not well suited to crow bar work.
I wanted to put some lawn in (as described in the photos last week, but I am now reasonably worried that if i do that, I am going to be smack back into the world of no sleep from shoulder pain.

I guess I will take two weekends off and see what happens and then try again.