Monday, September 21, 2015

Part #2: Thoughts on Ernest Hemingway and King David

On Visiting Hemingway’s Mansion

Next to the mansion Pauline’s money bought
Where Hemingway wrote
Timeless stories
Of skill
And luck
And Nothing…

Next to this blocked hard beauty
Of coral rock,
Survivor of hurricanes
Their dissolute lives
Of lust and liquor
And divorce…

Next to the survivors, the 54 cats
Including the 6-toed ones
And a 150-year-old Banyan tree…

Stand the Key West lighthouse and the mortuary.

Light and death…
Suicide at 61
Hemingway spoke of writing one true sentence.
Why not live one true life?

by Daniel Wilcox

First pub. in The Rogue Review
Also in Leaf Garden and Psalms, Yawps, and Howls


Partially Found Poem Lost*
*Created from an old review by Anthony Burgess
of Ernest Hemingway and His World
by Jack Beatty in The New Republic October 7, 1978

The Bull-thrower Hemingway touches up
His life to match his legend’s ‘fancifications,’
Combining the charming with family tragic
Compulsive aficionado of the braggart
Early photo shot of an ample youth
Clutching a dead bird in one hand
And holding a large thick phallus
Of a gun with the other; later
He basked and boasted of past
Wives and bulls figured in
Most of the pictures filled
With nerves and muscles
Instead of head and heart
Growing gloom, failing
To be his own tall myth
Pressure without grace
Too godlike to cope
A reason to despair
Caught in a terrible
Repetition from
Key West to
Bad end

Gathered into poetic form by
Daniel Wilcox

First pub. in The Houston Literary Review,
also in Psalms, Yawps, and Howls

"And when [God] had removed [Saul], he raised up David to be their king, of whom he testified and said, ‘I have found in David the son of Jesse a man after my heart, who will do all my will.’
Acts 13:22

After His Own Bloody Heart?

Like David when he killed for that Philistine king,
That former shepherd boy with his sling and stone,
Who had slaughtered and beheaded Goliath,

Now turned slaying brigand for Goliath’s nation;
So with a raider’s heart and savage sword,
God’s man assassinates 200 men fore- (their hidden) skin
Only so to wed into Saul’s royal line, loveless using,
Then abandoning his saving wife Michel for other women,
What a slew!

And this Godly marauder sallies forth from
Zitlag stringing a brazen deception,
Not a psalmed lyre; yes, a liar,
‘preying’ on others to execute,
Massacring every man, woman, and infant--

Hear the death ‘rattle’?

Palming other’s possessions, not psalming

Stripping the bleeding dead for precious loot,
Plundering towns, dark gashes of bandit smoke,
Oh the Hebrew off-angled gulag…
“Precious not is the over flow”

No truth shedding and bloody
Hellish, David living as Goliath—


*27 “David arose and went, along with his men, and killed two hundred of the Philistines. And David brought their foreskins, which were given in full number to the king, that he might become the king’s son-in-law. And Saul gave him his daughter Michal for a wife. 28 …Yahweh was with David, and that Michal, Saul’s daughter, loved him.
1 Samuel 18: 26-28

*Hymn ”Nothing But the Blood of Jesus”
* “Indeed, under the law almost everything is purified with blood, and without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness of sins.” Hebrews 9:22 ESV

By Daniel Wilcox

But thank Goodness, there is good news to counter all of the horror, tragedy, sorrow, cruelty, and absurdity...

In the Light,

Daniel Wilcox


Yekaterina Haussler said...

Hemingway was no saint, but he was a good writer. In my mind, therefore, his personal life should remain just that - personal. Talent (or genius) is a gift, but it can also be a burden, making it impossible for the talented person to "blend in", to be like and to enjoy the same things as everyone else. (Not an excuse - just an explanation)....
Personally, I feel each one of us has enough disappointing things in our lives, no need to add someone else's flaws and faults and get offended/discouraged/upset over it...
Thank you.

Daniel Wilcox said...

Hemingway was actually even worse than how I describe him.

He himself told his friends that he was being a real S.O.B. in the way he was mistreating Hadley.

And I just finished Mary Hemingway's book on their lives. He treated her terribly too, especially in the last 2 years; was a real jerk.

If you haven't read his incredibly powerful short story, "Hills Like White Elephants" do so when you get a chance. In it, great writer that he was, he was able to write about men such as himself critically.

He was both the best and the worst as his third wife said.

It all wasn't his own fault however. His family had severe dysfunction and chemicial imbalance, multiple suicides. His mother was strange--gave him a very bad upbringing. He referred to her as a bitch. She sent the gun to him that his father had used to commit suicide.:-(
All of his life, he was severely tempted to commit suicide. He made pacts with a friend that they would each help the other not do so.

I've read about 6 or maybe it's 7 scholarly biographies on Hemingway.

Such a conflicted, tragic, immoral man.

Yekaterina Haussler said...

I will definitely read this short story when I have the chance. Thank you for suggesting it, Daniel.