Young Authors Club

Here’s a somewhat funny link. You’ll find the “found” papers of famous writers before their careers took off. There’s a pretty decent Hemingway, a good Steinbeck, a fun Dante, and an OK David Foster Wallace (for one, you know he’d never hyphenate “hopefully-permanent”). I thought the Onion did a better DFW sendup five years ago.

Here’s my James Joyce. An excerpt from his previously undiscovered Ulysses proto-chapter written in 1894:

Again to church with Mother. Third time this week. The choire sings Laudate Dominum. I won’t pray for her today. Anything to confess? I should mention the time upstairs with hands alone? Better not. Suppose He knows anyway. That’s a confession in itself. Our Father and ten Hail Maries. Pants itch, shirtcollar too tight. Hot in here, panting. Young Molly fetching in her Sunday dress, choiring louder than the choire. Would be nice to see her petticoat, more. Meet her later, talk about the merits of Il Trovatore over Otello. She could be my Giuseppina Strepponi. My Molly. Molly Joyce. Marry my marry Molly Molly Molly. First be with her a few hours.
—Et cum spiritu tuo.
Off to Mr. McEyre’s afterwards. See Father and him have pints. Pint to Ireland again. Another pint to Parnell. There’s his church. Interesting discussions, those. If he spent more time working and less time gathering a mental militia for Home Rule, we might not be at the same level as the working girls on the navy street in the eyres of Society. I would be able to afford the books and clothes to impress Molly. His voice croaks, and he receives a froggy glance from Mom. Father Patrick addresses the congregation, conscious of the time.
—Ite, Missa est.
—Deo gratias says jolly James joyfully.
The congregation leaves the Holiest Church of the Clementissime Mother. Outside a vendor sells clementines imported from Africa. French empire stretching to tastier foods than British. L’etat en Afrique est mort. Vive l’etat de Alimentation! Rather not ask Mother about it, keep my ears soft and ready for Molly’s song. Noli me tangere.

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