Tuesday, 8 June 2010

'A rose for Emily' by William Faulkner

Read 'A rose for Emily'. I find the narrative a bit puzzling, but it's a good story nonetheless. The only thing is that I'm not sure if it should be read as a thriller - if it were, then really, the suspense is not created very well, as you can so see what has happened to H. B. way before it is actually disclosed. (Read it for yourself if you're interested; do not read on: potential spoiler)
We did not say she was crazy then. We believed she had to do that. We remembered all the young men her father had driven away, and we knew that with nothing left, she would have to cling to that which had robbed her, as people will.


For a long while we just stood there, looking down at the profound and fleshless grin. The body had apparently once lain in the attitude of an embrace, but now the long sleep that outlasts love, that conquers even the grimace of love, had cuckolded him.

I find the second quote, taken from the final scene, very interesting and puzzling at the same time. Does H. B. offer Miss Emily 'an embrace', or is it purely her imagination? It is definitely she who renders him dead, probably because of anger, disappointment and the desire to cling onto her idea of a lover, but why is H. B. 'cuckholded' by the long sleep? Does that imply he has been reluctant to consummate the relationship (because of his sexual inclination) and therefore his life is taken?

1 comment:

  1. "the long sleep that outlasts love" -- nice. I want to use it as a poem title!


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