6 February 2011

Charles Pembleton: Living in a Timewarp (1974)

I originally posted this (apart from a few minor alterations I've made here) to LibraryThing, and clean forgot to include it on my blog, where it belongs more, I suppose: this is not only about as obscure as you can get, but relates to my family history too:

Living in a Timewarp is a book of poems by a first cousin of mine who is unfortunately no longer with us, but to whom I related far more than most of my relatives. It is the only book he ever published. A sentence on the title-page reads 'Anything above zero is painful because it has meaning', which is uncredited and as I can't find it anywhere must assume that it comes from Charles himself. He knew a lot about mental pain.

His parents had almost forgotten about the publication because they couldn't understand it. Parts of it seem pretty clear to me, as they're about existential anguish. Other parts seem opaque, though, but then that's often how poetry appears. Maybe I should struggle with it a bit more, try to work out what he was trying to say. Sometimes, though, I wonder if he was being deliberately obscure and didn't want anyone to know what he meant, if indeed he always had a clear meaning at all. We shall  never know. At least you're out of your pain now, Charles.

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