A poet’s take on the prose of Harper Lee.
The titles alone are worth the price of admission – admission to the world portrayed by Harper Lee. To Kill a Mockingbird – everyday words in the transcendent setting of a southern adage, which itself stands in for a layer of socio-archeological strata that itself identifies its own temporal constraints.
Go Set a Watchman may be what one kid says to another some Saturday anywhere in the world for a game of any name among any number of kids for how ever long mom allows. Or it could be top item on God’s to-do list as he sketches out plans for John the revelator’s greatest hits. Thus, Miss Lee shows us how sublime the ordinary.
Mockingbird is one of those rare novels that is both popular and excellent. No offence to the popular imagination, but it’s not too bold to state that the majority of people are happy to think something through about two or three layers, but that’s all. An excellent novel requires more and for you to do so often. Good for the public sticking with it. That is why Harper Lee is so rare – 60 years on.
to be cont’d…