Thursday, October 16, 2003

Happy Birthday Oscar!!

Here’s an excerpt from Ellman’s Joyce
bio regarding OW, pg 283:

“Joyce had been interested in Wilde for a
long time....”. He saw in Wilde “something
of what he was coming to regard as his
own personality, the miserable man who
sings of joy.”

Other related facts:

Joyce wrote an article about Wilde for the
Piccolo della Sera on March 24, 1909.

Joyce read The Portrait of Dorian Gray (in
Italian) in 1906 and complained that Wilde
had veiled the homosexual aspects of the

In 1918, Joyce started a theatre troupe with
Claud Sykes. They chose The Importance of
Being Earnest for their first play. (The play
featured notorious prig Henry Carr who
caused a fuss after the play’s run was over).
At the intermission of a performance when
Joyce was being publicly congratulated,
followed by audience applause, Joyce yelled,
“Hurrah for Ireland! Poor Wilde was Irish and
so am I!”

Wednesday, October 15, 2003

I'm trying to dig up information on Joyce and Wilde.
I know Joyce was influenced by Wilde but I want details.
Joyce was in his teens when Oscar Wilde was sentenced
to two years hard labor; how could he not be influenced
by him. So I'm off to find out more and will present what
I find out in tomorrow's post (tomorrow is the anniver-
sary of Oscar Wilde's birth).

For now here's a Wilde quote which I'm sure Joyce

"There is no such thing as a moral or an immoral
book. Books are well written or badly written. That
is all".

Tuesday, October 14, 2003

The cover for the first edition of Ulysses was
printed in blue and white, something Joyce
insisted on. The color is a blue with a slight
greenish tinge and white lettering to suggest
both the ocean and the colors of the Greek
flag. I haven’t seen an actual copy, just a
copy of a copy in a rare books catalog.

Monday, October 13, 2003

Bloom’s Soliloquy

So everyone knows about Molly’s soliloquy.
Especially the ending when she remembers an
important afternoon on Howth Head with Bloom.
That’s as it should be. Not as many people know
that Bloom also has strong memories of that day,
found on page 144 of Ulysses and excerpted
below. I remember being so pleased when I first
read this part of Ulysses, that the afternoon on
Howth would have impacted Bloom as strongly
as it did Molly (maybe more).

“.......Ravished over her I lay, full lips full open,
kissed her mouth. Yum. Softly she gave me in
my mouth the seedcake warm and chewed.
Mawkish pulp her mouth had mumbled
sweetsour of her spittle. Joy: I ate it: joy. Young
life, her lips that gave me pouting. Soft warm
sticky gumjelly lips. Flowers her eyes were, take
me, willing eyes.....Screened under ferns she
laughed warmfolded......Wildly I lay on her,
kissed her: eyes, her lips, her stretched neck
beating, woman’s breasts full in her blouse of
nun’s veiling, fat nipples upright. Hot I tongued
her......She kissed me. I was kissed. All yielding
she tossed my hair. Kisses, she kissed me.”

Blog Archive