Friday, 23 September 2011

Twee Troubles // Memoirs of a Beatnik

Dear Diane Di Prima,

RE: Overindulgent Eroticism

We hasten to write this letter following the completion of your novel - Memoirs of a Beatnik. We were very much looking forward to writing a post for our Literature Love feature in a similar vein to last week's The Dud Avocado. Recently we've immersed ourselves in the romance and delectable charm of the 50s, we had high hopes that your book would glean insight into the other (slightly edgy, but not so perverse) side of the New York Beatnik scene...

One will admit that we may have been slightly naive at the outset. Our visions of Beatniks were originally formed from a slight obsession with watching Audrey Hepburn dance about in a tight black clothes in Funny Face, romanticising smokey clubs where 'spoken word' is the sound de jour and sexy bearded men philosophically pondered literature and the arts with a cigarette and brandy in hand.

However, instead we were horrified to find ourselves catapulted into a seedy underworld that was a million miles away from the poetry readings in cafés and arty parties we expected, from the very first page to the filthy end... The quip on the blurb about your book being 'unabashedly erotic' was quite the understatement. Nevertheless we persevered, reading with eyes half closed, barely able to look (yet, disturbingly riveted!) hoping that the plot would develop, that we'd get to some Beatniky clichés... We were comforted by the introduction of Jack Kerouac and Allen Ginsberg - but alas, they went straight to getting down to some gritty fornication.

In short, once thinking upon ourselves as modern women, unperturbed by wanton obscenities - it seems we were looking through rose tinted spectacles all along... Reduced to flustered girlish giggles and bashful blushes your book detailed things that we weren't even aware were legal in the 50s... not even sure if they are even now to be honest!

Definitely not a book we'll be recommending to our mothers...

Yours shocked and a little disturbed,

R&L xx

1 comment:

RETRO REVA said...

So great to find a black lover as well!
Terrific blog and new follower :)

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