Friday, July 22, 2005

The Book of the Grotesques

That in the beginning when the world was young there
were a great many thoughts but no such thing as a
truth. Man made the truths himself and each truth was a
composite of a great many vague thoughts. All about in
the world were the truths and they were all beautiful.

The old man had listed hundreds of the truths in his
book. I will not try to tell you of all of them. There
was the truth of virginity and the truth of passion,
the truth of wealth and of poverty, of thrift and of
profligacy, of carelessness and abandon. Hundreds and
hundreds were the truths and they were all beautiful.

And then the people came along. Each as he appeared
snatched up one of the truths and some who were quite
strong snatched up a dozen of them.

It was the truths that made the people grotesques. The
old man had quite an elaborate theory concerning the
matter. It was his notion that the moment one of the
people took one of the truths to himself, called it his
truth, and tried to live his life by it, he became a
grotesque and the truth he embraced became a falsehood.

-Sherwood Anderson

For those of you who have not read S. Anderson, you are missing quite a treat. Bold, Direct, Simple stories about real people. Honest to a point that might have been considered scandalous for his time. This man is a treasure. I cant stress enough how impressed I am with every word of his i have read. The section above was taken from Winesburg, Ohio. Read it!

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