I told the gentleman-writer who drank the rarest bourbon that the proper length of a novel was one page longer than War and Peace . . .
“A young man must not make safe investments.” — Jean Cocteau
The immediate “yes” to David’s proposal that I help run the lights for The Palm Casino Revue became an automatic response to any suggestion that I try something new.
1. Beyond the barrio of La Muñeca, leaving Havana heading toward San Antonio de los Baños, the city gradually turns rural. Or, to the inextricable mixture of textures at the edge of any large city, only more confusing in Havana’s case, because history has had such a dramatic break here.
My dreams are big budget affairs now: elaborate sets and costumes, huge casts, special effects, endless locations. They are vivid and artless, with choreographed violence. In the custom of dreams, there are no plots, but there is always the feeling of a plot.
EARLY IN MY EIGHTEENTH YEAR, on a pristine, sun-flushed autumn afternoon, as I made my way across Cornell University’s engineering quad from the library to a lecture, I was gripped by an overwhelming sadness on seeing a stray dog. The essence of that moment lingers: a profound affinity for the animal, solitary and noble in his demeanor.