Axes: Willa Cather and William Faulkner by Merrill Maguire Skaggs

By Merrill Maguire Skaggs

Axes strains the intimate dating among the texts released via Willa Cather and William Faulkner among 1922 and 1962. while these texts are juxtaposed and tested conscientiously, the 2 writers look intensely aware of, and aware of, each one other’s paintings. in reality, either at some point soon seem to have caricatured or parodied the opposite in print. Judging via the texts they left in the back of, they titillated, angry, exhilarated, and—especially—energized one another. a few readers may perhaps finish that for 40 years they helped create each one other—the rival geniuses and axes of yank fiction within the 20th century. At the tip in their lives, Cather deliberate a narrative to seem posthumously as recommendation to Faulkner approximately lifestyles and literary kind; he deliberate his final novel to respond to her in spirit and released it a month prior to his dying. This groundbreaking research is provocative and certain to ignite the imaginations of literary critics and committed readers of every writer.

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These names included not only periodicals and newspapers but also individuals as remote as William Howard Taft, and addresses as far afield as | 41 Nova Scotia (Blotner 374). That Willa Cather and several of her friends would have received such a notice is not a stretch. Further, Edith Lewis recounts the fact that Cather was at this time hosting a literary salon on Friday afternoons at 5 Bank Street. 1 Roseboro’ not only heard all; she told it. After Faulkner’s poetry book finally materialized, Stone acted as agent and sent copies to those who might prove useful.

He drew a bottle from under his pillow. ” “I don’t mind if I do,” Claude put out his hand. The other laughed and sank back on his pillow, drawling lazily, “Brave boy! ” “It’s not particular. Drink to Hindenburg, or the High Command, or anything else that got you out of the cornfield. ” “Well, it’s a good guess, anyhow. ” “Crystal Lake, Iowa. . ” He yawned and folded his hands over his stomach. ” “Not quite. ” “Yes. I’ve been back and forth all the time, England and a sta rt i ng p oin t | 15 France.

It was a dead, opaque, lumpy solidity, like chunks of putty, or tightly packed sawdust — very disappointing to the tactile sense, yet somehow always fooling you again” (ph 18). This change from hard putty to cold marble also follows a lead in The Professor’s House in which Cather privileges sculpture. To be compared to sculpture in her novel, which the dress forms were not, is highest praise. Tom Outland discovers on the Blue buzzin g | 23 Mesa “a little city of stone, asleep. It was still as sculpture — and something like that” (ph 201).

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