Grand Man: Memories of Norman Douglas

By Nancy Cunard | Go to book overview

3
Some Thoughts on his Writing

AS a humourist he rings out high and clear and without striving--humour is one ore in the rich and complicated amalgam of his being, whose best moments in writing belong to the stratosphere of pure and undefinable inspiration. And if that last word generally finds its place next to some great dramatic moment in Letters, it may certainly fit his wit as well-- his wit, for instance, in that Preface to Alone--one of the most brilliant things he has written.

For ebullient inventiveness, a passage in Late Harvest comes to mind. He is reminiscing about South Wind and this leads him to think of the kind of letters all authors would like to get--but never do! Here, among others, is one "model":

"Dear D,

This is the limit. Last night I shrieked myself hoarse with laughing over your last story about the Armadillo and the Cardinal's niece. What must she have thought? And the Armadillo, pensive and resigned. Now what I say is this. A fellow who can make you laugh so much deserves something for his trouble. And let me tell you I've just thought of something. You know Uncle Fred left me his place at Hampstead, including that priceless 'Library'. I've been selling the muck to Snaggs as fast as I can by the cart-load. But there's one lot he won't touch. Seven shelves of erotica or whatever you call it. I've looked at some

-31-

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Grand Man: Memories of Norman Douglas
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents v
  • List of Illustrations vii
  • Author's Note ix
  • Chronology of Norman Douglas 1868-1952 xi
  • Books by Norman Douglas xviii
  • I - Essay on Douglas 1
  • 1 - Of His Ways and Character 3
  • 2 - Douglas and Italy 20
  • 3 - Some Thoughts on His Writing 31
  • II - Letter to Norman 57
  • 1 - Earlier Memories 59
  • 2 - The Tunisian Journey 112
  • 3 - Wartime and After 153
  • III - Appreciations By Several Friends 229
  • 1 - 1868-1952* 231
  • 2 - "Uncle Norman" 236
  • 3 - Letter About Norman Douglas From Charles Duff 243
  • 4 - Douglas on Capri 248
  • 5 - A Day 254
  • IV - Bibliographical Note 265
  • V - His Books 273
  • Index 309
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