Home » Reading » (Ron Slate on) William Matthews on Narrative and Time

(Ron Slate on) William Matthews on Narrative and Time

Emphasis mine:

Matthews knew the dangers inherent in narrative, as spelled out in another Curiosities essay, “Dishonesty and Bad Manners”: “Things happen consecutively in narrative that happen simultaneously in psychic life, and there are many critics and poets who prefer the experience of consecutive time to simultaneous time because it makes moral discourse easier, and because causality and guilt are easier to assert as religious or quasi-religious principles in narrative than in any of the many other experiences of time.” His dream was for an upshot of psychic immediacy in the course of a riff, a disruption of the poem’s official time zone.

via on New Hope for the Dead: Uncollected William Matthews, ed. by Sebastian Matthews and Stanley Plumly (Red Hen Press) | On the Seawall: A Literary Website by Ron Slate (GD).

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