So Long, Kilgore Trout


I saw Kurt Vonnegut read at Trenton State College. Despite his age, he grasped the podium with vigor and held forth on the essence of drama, of humanity. I’d discovered his work the first summer I came home from college and was working in a grocery store. On break, out on the loading dock, I read my father’s copy of Cat’s Cradle, long dormant on his book shelf since it had been recommended to him in theological school as a way of “getting in touch with the young people.” Vonnegut does that, all right, and so much more.   My senior year high school English teacher had handed out photocopies of Billy Pilgrim’s backward journey through time–where the bombs are sucked back upward into the planes, taken to factories, disassembled, etc.  His is the alchemist’s skill–the ability to turn tragedy to comedy. To those who, as quoted in the New York Times (from which the above picture is also gleaned), reject Kurt’s work as collections of empty aphorisms, all I have to say is, gee, sorry!  To the rest of you: “If this isn’t nice, I don’t know what is.”

So it goes.

-E. Scripsi

Published in: on April 12, 2007 at 12:09 am  Comments (3)  

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3 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. Not much to add here. Just that if the prose in any of these books you promote is near the quality of the blurb writing I just read for this book, I just might have to actually download some texts and try reading them.

    Being one of the growing number of beings on Earth who ‘absorb’ literature through every and all avenues besides actually doing any reading, I don’t have credibility in this forum. Nonetheless, Mr. Scripsi–it seems pretty clear even to me–should be writing his own books.

    PS–I LOVE the notion of reverse engineering bombs!!! :)

  2. Actually that book by Vonnegut (which I still have not read) was recommended to me when I was still an undergraduate, and it was recommended by someone who is now a law professor in Seattle. Trivial point? Perhaps. Yet now that Vonnegut has moved on, I feel that I still do need to read that book. But I think Scripsi never returned it. And he is a librarian?? Egads!! What have I sired?

  3. I’ll, er, ahem, get that right in the mail. Might even still have your copy.

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