Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Awaiting the return of she -- a variation

"Well, not exactly," would be my response to the question should anyone actually interpret the title of this post as a literary allusion to Ayesha. More likely, however, no one reading this post has ever heard of Ayesha or of the novels, "She" and "Ayesha, the Return of She," by H. Rider Haggard. However, without ever realizing it you may have brushed against Ayesha in a metaphorical sense as characters based on her who have appeared in the work of J.R.R. Tolkien and C.S. Lewis, or wondered who she was had you read Sigmund Freud's, "The Interpretation of Dreams," or spent some time absorbing the essays of Carl Jung. So, if your curiosity has not been aroused by now, it is not because I did not try. As for my title on this post, on occasion I have referred to myself as "He" -- usually in the context of "He who waits for She." I assume you get my drift. If not, suffice to say summer has returned, and a new season of my wait for "She" is under way.

Where is the homeland?

H. Rider Haggard was a writer of the late Nineteenth and early Twentieth centuries, so you might have an excuse if you have not heard of him. All right, let us travel to the mid-Twentieth Century and mention a writer of that era: How many of you know who Jack Kerouac was?

How many of you are familiar with the words he wrote in a 1949 letter: "All of life is a foreign country."

How many of you think you know what Kerouac meant with those words?

How many of you care what that sentence means and sometimes think thoughts like that?

I go back and forth on Kerouac's literary significance. I first read his "On the Road" in college. I thought even then that Kerouac -- "the man" -- was more interesting than the book -- or any other book that he ever wrote, for that matter. Nothing has changed my mind since. He was a man's man who was more of a recorder of life around him than he was a novelist. Does that really change anything?

Once upon a time, I had the opportunity to interview Kerouac's buddy, Allen Ginsberg. He truly was a boring man, I thought at the time. But, he was speaking on the college circuit then, and, perhaps, he was bored from presenting the same talk to the idolizing child-students in his audiences and was reflecting or radiating that feeling toward anyone who spoke to him. I mention this because I would have much preferred to have interviewed Kerouac, but he was long dead by the time my path crossed with Ginsberg.

So, why am I writing these rambling thoughts? In recent weeks, I keep being reminded of the Kerouac quote: "All of life is a foreign country."

Being reminded of it often keeps me thinking about it often. And, I wonder. If Kerouac were right -- that life is a foreign country -- and, I think he might have been, then where is the homeland? The native soil? The land where I belong?

Asking questions is easy. Finding answers to them is what actually takes talent and ability. So far, I have not found the answer to that question. Possibly, the place where I belong is the place where "She” dwells.

Hmmmm. I wonder. I wonder if she sits beneath the branches of some other old tree waiting for me to arrive while, at the same time, I sit here -- beneath my World Tree (Yggdrasil) -- waiting for her.


Anonymous said...

hi.Norway calling!!

how are you?

Beautiful post and very very nice photo!!me like very much!!lucky that gal which is going to sit there!1woo hoo!!

about your book,,She by Henry Rider Haggard!!i think i must read it!!seems very nice..adventure in the victorian imperialism time.and if you google a little more..something interesting accours as..adventurers Leo Vincey and Holly are still enamored with the fallen Ayesha. Haunted by her presence, they receive a vision that She has returned; reincarnated in a remote corner of the world. Hoping the vision is true, Leo and Holly set forth for Tibet where they brave rugged mountain passes, avalanches, murderous tribes, and yet another soul from their forgotten past who has it's own designs upon their future.

Yeah,i might get that book.

About Jack Kerouac..what he said at that time was very interesting..but now a days everybody says the same..it is not new stuff under the horizon..As Stanley Cubrick says with this vid..


It is all saying the same things..iam waiting for something different..something new..I feel they all say the same once again but nobody does anything about it.i quess it is a matter of politics.Politics influence everything we do.Just think about it..

ok.i have returned to Bergen again.and now i will post some photoes of "the grand le tour.."hahahaha

We also have a massive stike going on..it looks filthy everywhere trash is on the strrets..offices schools..firedepatment..bancks is calling for more money..i wonder..why the rich only get richer and the middle class keep mourning about some more little Krones in their pocket..well the state of norway soon will go in with compulsory arbitration.and us the people have to accept.which is the only thing to do..otherwise it will be totally anarki!!

see you soon Fram!!

Bitch said...

Dear Fram!
Anita is right by saying that nothing changed..
All the same questions and not one right answer..
Me myself I stopped all the questions..
I live by the motto - here and now -.
Take the juice (if there is any left).. a question again :)!!

See you!!!!

Fram Actual said...

It appears you did so much research that it will not be necessary for you to read the "She" novels, Anita. But, of course, if you wish to enjoy the stories as well as to simply know them, I guess reading them would be worth your time.

I enjoy many books from that era by writers like Arthur Conan Doyle, Edgar Rice Burroughs, Bram Stoker and, of course, H. Rider Haggard. I would recommend Haggard's "King Solomon's Mines." There have been a number of film versions of that book, as well.

I think you and I have very different ideas about what Jack Kerouac meant when he wrote, "All of life is a foreign country." I might explain further what I think he meant, but I am more curious at this point to see if anyone else will offer their interpretation of the words.

It is interesting what you write about the economic situation in Norway. Personally, I think the world is on the brink of a global-wide financial meltdown. Gold and guns and oil will be the only currency of value in a few more years.

Fram Actual said...

Well, Monika, I think both you and Anita have an understanding different from my own of the meaning behind Jack Kerouac's sentence, "All of life is a foreign country." And, again, I will defer from making any remarks about my own thoughts regarding what he meant until there has been more time in which others might add their viewpoints if they wish.

At times, I try to live in the here and now, like you say you do, but the past always calls me back to examine it and to analyze it and to learn from it, while the future always hastens me to discover what is around the next bend in the river.

By the way, refreshments of the liquid variety are consumed abundantly and rapidly in my backyard and on my patio. Unfortunately, I take them alone these days.

Wind said...

Hello everybody!
Do you miss me?
Do you remember me?

What means 'homeland'?
That place which smells like fresh grass?....where everything is possible?....our childhood?...or....?

I run away from home when I was teenager and when I came back, (hoping to find my 'homeland' or some peace for my mind) I found an empty space...unrecognizable....other people, other trees, but for sure, other me...
HOMELAND does not exist, Fram....
This 'Homeland' is momentary like happiness...
"All of life is a foreign country..." where we are strangers, trying to find something familiar, fighting to discover that paradise filled with love and safeness (?)
Well, this place does not exist, either...
We have only hope...that beneth the branches of an old tree, in an old castle from Warshaw or Loire Valey, in a coffe shop... we will find our 'homeland' - the place where happiness is not momentary...at least not so short...

See you soon...
I hope you are ok...

Wind said...

Hello Anita and Monika!
My best regards from Romania!

Fram Actual said...

There are at least two things going on here, Daliana.

Yes, in my post I, too, was alluding to the native land or homeland as a place. While my logical self thinks Jack Kerouac said "all of life is a foreign country" because he understood that there is the chance for each of us to encounter new and alien (so to speak) experiences each and every day we are alive, my inner, more mystical self thinks his meaning might have been much deeper, more complex.

And, in that sense, I agree with you that a homeland does not exist. I have written about this concept before in the context of my original name for my Dakota home being "Sanctuary." Within a few years, events occurred which led me to realize there is no such thing or place as a sanctuary in this life, so I began to call it "Refuge." Then, when my marriage ended, I abandoned the concept of even securing a refuge on more than a temporary basis. Therefore, I agree entirely with what you wrote.

His meaning might be made clearer if a person could read the entire letter in which Kerouac wrote that “all of life is a foreign country.” Not having had the opportunity to do that, I can speculate that his meaning was deeper and more complex than simply encountering unknown people/events/knowledge each day a person is alive. Perhaps, his words even signaled religious overtones. That is as far as I will go in that direction at the moment.

And, no matter what the meaning, yes, as long as there is life, there is hope for at least "long moments" of happiness.

In answer to your closing: No, I am not ok, but I hope I will be by Saturday, and my world is a bit brighter already by discovering you have found your way back to this page. Thank you.

Fram Actual said...

Good morning.

I am suspending this blog, for how long, I am not certain. Maybe, forever. It is not a quick decision. Some of you, I am certain, will understand and send me a smile.

In the meanwhile, as Macbeth said:

To-morrow, and to-morrow, and to-morrow,
Creeps in this petty pace from day to day,
To the last syllable of recorded time;
And all our yesterdays have lighted fools
The way to dusty death. Out, out, brief candle!
Life's but a walking shadow, a poor player,
That struts and frets his hour upon the stage,
And then is heard no more. It is a tale
Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury,
Signifying nothing.

Take care and stay safe.

Fram the Fortunate, aka, grrrr ....

Something special ....