Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Ruby Circe # 2 Ulysses #19

Outtake from the Underworld; Joyce's Nightworld.

"Stitch in my side. Why did I run?" James Joyce

"Are you looking for someone?. He is inside with his friends." James Joyce
"Bloom. He swerves, sidles, stepaside, slips past and on." James Joyce

The chapter "Circe"is written as a play.
Leopold Bloom is chasing his alter ego young Stephen Dedalus in and out of scenes in Dublin's Red Light District.
In various costumes and roles Mr. Bloom tries his best to save his young image from becoming himself.
A challenging task, which Leopold Bloom take upon whole hearted, and which he inevitably is bound to loose.

The quilt is made of ties. The artist named it "All my men."

"Marion. Go and see life. See the wide world."James Joyce

Likewise our hero is torn between the many tempting females, Martha, Zoe, Gerty, Mrs Breen, Bridie, a Millionairess, a Noblewoman, Mrs. Thornton, Kitty, The Veiled Sibyl and finally the mighty queen; Bella Cohen (with whom he in a burlesque hallucination changes sex). All the time he's preoccupied of the thoughts and doings of his wife Molly, who Stephen met this very day, June 16th, and who now probably is being unfaithful with the appalling Blazes Boylan.

He gave me a flower and told it was a rare species, picked high up in the mountains.

I showed it to a gardener, and he revealed, it was a common hothouse flower.

I know James Joyce has read Henrik Ibsen's play "Peer Gynt", even in original language. Peer has an equal surreal experience in Egypt, meeting the Sphinx, being robbed by beautiful Anitra in the desert, ending up at a Madhouse with people of various nations.
I think, maybe this has been kind of an inspiration to Joyce.
The chapter of Circe is ending in a tragedy. The fighting, but misunderstood Bloom,wearing all mankind's mischief on his weak and bursting shoulders,
meets his dead son Rudy once more.

The rooster crowing about betrayal

"(Silent, thoughtful, alert he stands on guard, his fingers at his lips in the attitude of secret master. Against the dark wall a figure appears slowly, a fairy boy of eleven, a changeling, kidnapped, dressed in an Eton suit with glass shoes and a little bronze helmet, holding a book in his hand. He reads from right to left inaudibly, smiling, kissing the page.) James Joyce

(Wonderstruck, calls inaudibly.) Rudy!" James Joyce
"In his free left hand he holds a slim ivory cane with a violet bowknot. A white lambkin peeps out of his waistcoat pocket." (U15.4966) James Joyce

Underneath all the theater, drinking, womanizing, clown making, political issues, religious doubts, love and lust is the deep and unhealed sorrow for his dead son, Rudy. As was the case in Joyce's own life.
I keep thinking of my granddad, Gunnar's father and Terry's father. They all lost a child, and people keep saying, "the sorrow marked them for the rest of their life."
The Nordic skald, Egil Skallagrimsson comes to mind. He was a viking and served viking kings, making great poems about their victories on the battlefields.
Then he lost his son Bodvar, and his grief was so deep, he didn't want to live anymore. His daughter persuaded him to write a memory poem about his beloved son. Sonatorrek
has become unique in Nordic poetry, historic, praised and loved ever since.

Originated by MaryT, check hers for today