"Beware when the great God lets loose a thinker on this planet." ~Ralph Waldo Emerson US essayist & poet (1803 - 1882)

Friday, September 29, 2006

"You've gotten awfully brave, awfully suddenly"

-Ernest Hemingway, from the short story...

The Short Happy Life of Francis Macomber

My good friend Lisa, see blog link on the right side on your screen, emailed me recently and asked about my motivation, and what i am hoping to accomplish by attempting to complete the big run.

i'm honestly not sure. However, this question has led to this little series of posts that perhaps provide some insight. Thanks to my Anon. response correcting Marius vs Alexander. First, because i know now if i ever get serious about writing, i need a fact checker. Second, cause anybody who ever sat through Greek and Roman Lit. at Central would enjoy knowing how the professor erred on a big fact.

But, now, let's jump ahead a few thousand years...

Hemingway is one of my favorite writers. Not so much due to his detailed plot and descriptive nature, but rather his tone. For me reading Hemingway was all about the mood. He left out huge amounts of details in his writing, and most of his endings were a bit ambiguous. Mood and tone, though, does it for me. You always know how his characters feel, cause they're always real.

Francis Macomber is one of my favorite, along with Nick Adams (i grew up in the same part of Michigan), characters. Without ruining the ending, although by the title you can figure out what happens, Francis has a few brief true moments of happiness.

Hemingway's code is more obvious in this story than in any other. The details of the code go in so many directions, but for me....

Is it better to live long and unhappy and safe, or is it better to take risks, truly engage in the moment, and be vulnerable?

Also, if i make a decision to take this risk and make a conscious change. How does it affect the people around me?

'Cause Margot really flipped when Francis changed. It's a short story, go read it.

Good thing i don't own a gun, right Fun Guv'nor? Hope that doesn't totally blow the ending. What??!?, Bruce Willis was really dead the whole movie? Who'da thunk?

i think i can finish this little thought and tie all together into a nice little bow with my next post. i just might be able to answer Lisa question.

thanks for reading


Lisa said...

I'm sitting on the edge of my chair, oh friend of mine.

I'll miss you tomorrow for the 20-miler. :(

Nitmos said...

Boy, I haven't read Hemingway in awhile.

I might have to pull up a chair. Prop my feet. And let a sip of red wine roll across my tongue. Read the simple prose. Rocking on my deck chair. In the rain.

I'm ready for the Bad Hemingway contest!