I remember that while reading and upon finishing Possession I shivered with inspiration and wish to engage in some kind of intellectual work, in research. It provoked me to write extensive notes and diary entries and flooded me with enthusiasm.

Contrary to that, Parade’s End left me motionless and mute. I feel I cannot utter a word about it (not even to myself) let alone write. And, of course, I cannot – don’t want to, really – start reading any other book… I guess I am deeply saddened, saddened to the very core. It is a strange kind of impact and I do wonder what caused it, what are the reasons?

I am having a particularly hard time persuading my brain into collaboration – it is stubbornly refusing to think, to help me solve the mystery… Maybe it has something to do with not hearing Christopher’s voice or thoughts in the last part of tetralogy… It certainly has something to do with Last Post since before reading it I was well… Maybe it came with the full revelation of Sylvia’s almost limitless cruelty… Maybe it is a kind of a Weltschmerz?… Yes, this is very likely the right track… It’s not just about Sylvia’s cruelty but the hypocrisy of society; it is the way Christopher is treated by Schatzweiler, for example… Good God, I will never understand it… People are always sobbing and whining how hard it is to find a good man and when they have him right in front of their noses they are more than ready to throw him in the mud, to believe or invent the worst about him than to acknowledge his qualities…

I am not certain if this text is worth posting. Nevertheless, I have to do it because the guilt is gripping me tightly. I have not written anything for so long. The whole day yesterday I have been struggling to put words and sentences together but again in vain. Today, I just have to see a new publish date on my home page… 

As an interlude to re-reading Parade’s End, I thought I could read his The Queen Who Flew. Didn’t even knew he wrote fairy tales till yesterday!


3 thoughts on “Paralysis

  1. I have always been convinced that Byatt’s Possession is a book I will love, and although I have a copy of it, somehow I chose to listen to the audiobook instead of reading the book some years ago. I enjoyed it as much as I thought I would, but got distracted halfway and didn’t end up finishing the book. I will definitely start again from the beginning one of these days. And Parade’s End is certainly high on the list now, as I am rather curious to see what could have had such power to render you motionless & mute. :)

    1. How’s it going with these two books? Started ‘Parade’?
      I would definitely love to read it again some time soon.. I wonder if it would leave me with the attack of Weltschmerz (it was caused by its fourth book ‘Last Post’, to be precise). But, I’m in love with ‘Some Do Not’! – magnificent piece of writing.

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