Finnegan’s Play

Finnegan once wrote a play. Well, I can’t say that for sure because it could have been a character in Finnegan’s Play who wrote Finnegan’s Play. But the absence of any so-named cast member in Finnegan’s Play makes me suspect, and it is just that, a suspicion, that Finnegan authored Finnegan’s Play. . . . Not that it matters . . . or that it was a play or that I know Finnegan, though I’d like to, thoroughly, though I see little chance of that at present, given, I mean, the divorce between actor and setting.

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Darconville’s Cat by Alexander Theroux

About Alexander Theroux: “Alexander Theroux is a writer who resists classification. His first book, Three Wogs (1972), is a triptych of novellas that examined the class and racial conflicts that occur between the archetypal Londoner and the inhabitants of the British Isles, the “wogs,” who are “not one of us.” This exceptional debut received a nomination for the National Book Award. Theroux’s second novel, Darconville’s Cat (1981), is widely considered his masterpiece. Anthony Burgess hailed it as one of the best 99 novels written in English since 1939. Darconville’s Cat is an exquisite novel of revenge and thwarted love. It too was nominated for a National Book Award. An Adultery (1987) is a detailed, fictional character study of the sin in question in a contemporary New England that still manages to evoke the echoes of its Puritanical past. Theroux has also published two widely regarded books of essays, The Primary Colors & The Secondary Colors (1994 & 1996), along with a collection of poems, The Lollipop Trollops & Other Poems (1992), as well as two monographs and several books of fables. Laura Warholic, or The Sexual Intellectual, published by Fantagraphics, [was] Theroux’s first novel in twenty years.” – Bookslut

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Caesarian & Euthanasia

The would-be mother would’ve heard the prognosis from the nurses before he came in. Breach. Heart rate. Distress. He’d be the first to say out loud the baby will be just fine. We do not have to wait. We can go to him. By now at the age of a hundred and three he has said this one thousand times. His own heart still strong. His back sort of straight. Nothing wrong with him but the world he’s stuck in. So he’s decided. He’s done. He buys a one-way ticket to Switzerland. A place where reason is legal. Caesar himself would have wanted the same. To pick the where and the when. Caesar who was never born but from a woman’s womb untimely ripped. He’d been crestfallen as a child to learn from an old textbook that the incision is not literally C-shaped. Euthanasia another term with so much tonal promise. Youth in Asia. To be born again on some pacific isle. Eternal childhood in the land of the rising run. His flight east lasts thirteen hours. A representative meets him at the airport, takes from him his weightless bag. Even at a hundred and three he resents the gesture. I’m no newborn, sir. My hand needs no holding. There was never any crying in his operating rooms. No legs in the air with wails and scripted breaths. No push push push, just one clean decisive pull. His own procedure is slotted for the following afternoon. Not in a hospital but a rest home. How nice. A rest in peace home. Leather couches and tea service. Chandeliers. The website lists options not unlike a menu. He used to lift newborns with that image in mind, a long list of possibilities, whispering to each of them you have no idea what you’re in for, do you? You weren’t ready to come, but we went in and got you anyway.

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