“good enough for Keats”

Having been reminded recently that I am not as familiar with the works of P. G. Wodehouse as I should be, I downloaded an audio copy of The Clicking of Cuthbert to listen to.

It’s slightly surreal to walk around rural Spain with something so eminently English sounding in my head, and it does mean that I am liable to reply in English to any neighbourly salutation, but I don’t find as much time for reading as I’d like and some of the free audio books from librivox.org are an absolute delight, even if they are read by amateurs.

My neighbours probably already think I’m half crazy – speaking to them in English doesn’t help – a suspicion that won’t have been helped by the broad grin on my face as I walked back from the village this afternoon.
The Librivox recordings are not abridged, so the reading began with the foreword. After the recent discussion in my post facts and fictions I was amused to hear this:

POSTSCRIPT.–In the second chapter I allude to Stout Cortez staring at the Pacific. Shortly after the appearance of this narrative in serial form in America, I received an anonymous letter containing the words, “You big stiff, it wasn’t Cortez, it was Balboa.” This, I believe, is historically accurate. On the other hand, if Cortez was good enough for Keats, he is good enough for me. Besides, even if it was Balboa, the Pacific was open for being stared at about that time, and I see no reason why Cortez should not have had a look at it as well.

It’s probably true: I should read more Wodehouse.

Author: don't confuse the narrator

Exploring the boundary between writer and narrator through first person poetry, prose and opinion

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