For some reason this morning I was thinking of E F Benson – you know, the ‘Mapp and Lucia’ guy – so beautifully dramatised with Maggie Smith and Prunella Scales as Lucia and Mapp respectively.  I don’t know why I like the stories so much – his characters have no redeeming features but are somehow likeable; they live lives of gossip and mind-numbing trivia, yet somehow he contrives to make them interesting – I care whether or not Susan is wearing her sables as she swelters in the Rolls on a journey which would be quicker on foot; I cannot be indifferent to whether Miss Mapp, after swearing she had no more stocks of rhubarb jam, is found to have a cupboard bursting with the stuff: I demand to know whether or not Major Benjy really does have a war-wound or if it’s just gout.  ‘Show me the exact spot where Louisa Musgrove fell!’, as someone said – I can’t remember who.  He is Austinian in his attention to the detail of these lives, though Benson turns all to comedy and forgets to have a high moral purpose.

Speaking of which… Samuel Johnson is often quoted as saying that no man (sic) but a blockhead ever wrote, except for money.  What is forgotten, however, is that he also said – frequently – that one should have a high moral purpose in writing.

So there!

Mark has just declared that heaven is in his big toe.

So that’s that.  Oh, a late poem has just flooded in:

On Being a Personal Saviour

that’s terribly clever behaviour

kill Bill and save me

climb hill and have tea

then cry as your shape becomes wavier.


Mm.  Needs work.  Ah well – I must away now and do the prayers for tomorrow

Kirk out

2 thoughts on “E F B

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