Wednesday, May 9, 2007

More Hemingway

Another great story from the Hemingway collection: “The Sea Change.” This one is a conversation between a man and a woman in a bar at the end of a relationship. And the bartender watches, but thinks about a horse. The couple is young, tan, healthy, and the man does not know how to deal with the fact that “the girl” is leaving him to pursue a lesbian affair.

At the beginning of the story, the man looks at the girl and notes, in a great sentence, how “her skin was a smooth golden brown, her blonde hair was cut short and grew beautifully away from her forehead.” Toward the end, as he sends her away, he looks at her again, noting again her hair and how it grows, but this time without the “beautifully.” And his voice sounds strange to him. And he feels like a different man. And he finds that he has “settled into something.” And he moves to the bar, remarking that, “Vice… is a very strange thing” and joining the couple (are they men?) already sitting there. The “other two” make room for him, “so that he would be quite comfortable.”


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