Monday, November 29, 2010

Prime Passage: The Night Inspector by Frederick Busch

Of the secondary character called "M," who is Herman Melville:
"For so many of his young years, he had written what he could to make his way and make his wage; then, apparently, he had manufactured what he must, and he'd made neither. That is the way of the world, the ebb and flow of dollars, but knowing this could not have been of consolation; and in the pressure in the house -- an atmosphere, like storm, as the barometric pressure dropped, and the very air pressed hard, in silence, at the inner doors of the rooms, the windows looking onto East Twenty-sixth Street -- he drank his drinks and then escaped to walk to work, swallowing his own saliva as it welled like poison in his throat and mouth, and heard, from this remaining friend or that, how many of the other, former, friends were certain he had died." p.186