Sunday, July 29, 2012
Pale Fire "Liberated"?
Nabokov describes a poem written on Index Cards by a certain John Shade in Pale Fire. This poem has now been published separately. In a review of the New York Times we find: "PALE FIRE: A Poem in Four Cantos by John Shade (Gingko Press, $35) is an almost ridiculously lovely package: the poem itself is printed in a small booklet, the note cards upon which Shade “wrote” the poem are recreated (complete with faux ink stains), and an accompanying critical text contains helpful essays from the Nabokov scholar Brian Boyd and the poetry critic R. S. Gwynn (who makes a smart case for Nabokov having used couplets partly as a response to Robert Lowell’s early work). If you’re a Nabokov devotee, this is comparable to getting a special edition of “Physical Graffiti” with a facsimile string from one of Jimmy Page’s custom violin bows inside." The whole thing seems shady (sorry!) to me. See also here and here. No further comment!