Two dilated feet

Points of interest about the foregoing passage: first is the “quick hissing thuds.” “Hissing” is a surprising modifier of “thuds.” Faulkner may have been thinking of a specific sound rubber soles at that time made; even so, one might have expected “squishing”, but one gets “hissing”, –hissing thuds,– which maybe is what squishing is.

Second is “suave and sourceless.” I don’t like “suave” overmuch here. (Pylon was published between Light in August and Absolom, in 1935.)

Third is “unearthly day colored substance” (descriptive of fluorescent light?) Not unbearably/intolerably day colored substance; not unearthly light colored fluid, or substance colored light; it’s not light, but it’s day-colored, it’s substance, but unearthly.

Would like to do some metric analysis of his listing of commercial objects, which starts with obvious iambs, then the feet seem to expand, and then to expand again: “the hats and ties and shirts, the belt // buckles and cufflinks and handkerchiefs//, the pipes shaped like golfclubs and the drinking tools shaped like boots…”

What I’m calling the first line would iambic tetrameter, what I’m calling the second would be dactylic trimeter, and what I’m call the third would be, I don’t know what. I want to say that everything between pipes and golf is stressed as well as everything between ‘drink-‘ and boots, two dilated feet, but an expert is called for.

%d bloggers like this: