Que les poÃ¨tes morts laissent la place aux autres. Et nous pourrions tout de mÃªme voir que c'est notre vÃ©nÃ©ration devant ce qui a Ã©tÃ© dÃ©j? fait, si beau et si valable que ce soit, qui nous pÃ©trifie, qui nous stabilise et nous empÃªche de prendre contact avec la force qui est dessous, que l'on appelle l'Ã©nergie pensante, la force vitale, le dÃ©terminisme des Ã©changes, les menstrues de la lune ou tout ce qu'on voudra.
Kilmartin wrote a highly amusing and illuminating account of his experience as a Proust revisionist, which appeared in the first issue of Ben Sonnenberg's quarterly in the autumn of 1981. The essay opened with a kind of encouragement: 'There used to be a story that discerning Frenchmen preferred to read Marcel Proust in English on the grounds that the prose of was deeply un-French and heavily influenced by English writers such as Ruskin.' I cling to this even though Kilmartin thought it to be ridiculous Parisian snobbery; I shall never be able to read Proust in French, and one's opportunities for outfacing Gallic self-regard are relatively scarce.
Every article and review and book that I have ever published has constituted an appeal to the person or persons to whom I should have talked before I dared to write it. I never launch any little essay without the hope and the fear, because the encounter may also be embarrassing that I shall draw a letter that begins, 'Dear Mr. Hitchens, it seems that you are unaware that' It is in this sense that authorship is collaborative with 'the reader.' And there's no help for it: you only find out what you ought to have known by pretending to know at least some of it already.It doesn't matter how obscure or arcane or esoteric your place of publication may be: some sweet law ensures that the person who should be scrutinizing your work eventually does do so.