Love vs Sex 106

As he sipped his weak highball, Tsukuru mentally undressed Sara. Unhooking the back of her dress, quietly unzipping her. He’d only slept with her once, but it had been wonderful, and fulfilling. Dressed or undressed, she looked five years younger than she was, with pure white skin and beautiful rounded, modestly sized breasts. Leisurely foreplay, caressing her, had been amazing, and after he came, he had felt at peace as he held her close. But that wasn’t all there was to it. He was well aware that there was something more. Making love was a joining, a connection between one person and another. You receive something, and you also have to give.

Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and his Years of Pilgrimage

Haruki Murakami          2013

Love vs Sex 104

Pretext: In this story, Billy is a shell-shocked WW II soldier who randomly time-travels (within his mind) to different life events. He has also spent time as the captive of an alien species known as the Tralfamadorians. Pay attention, for satire is ever present in the words of Vonnegut.

Now he was in bed with Valencia in a delightful studio apartment which was built on the end of a wharf on Cape Ann, Massachusetts. Across the water were the lights of Gloucester. Billy was on top of Valencia, making love to her. One result of this act would be the birth of Robert Pilgrim, who would become a problem in high school, but who would then straighten out as a member of the famous Green Berets.

Valencia wasn’t a time-traveler, but she did have a lively imagination. While Billy was making love to her, she imagined that she was a famous woman in history. She was being Queen Elizabeth the First of England, and Billy was supposedly Christopher Columbus.

Billy made a noise like a small, rusty hinge. He had just emptied his seminal vesicles into Valencia, had contributed his share to the Green Beret. According to the Tralfamadorians, of course, the Green Berets would have seven parents in all.

Now he rolled off his huge wife, whose rapt expression did not change when he departed. He lay with the buttons of his spine along the edge of the mattress, folded his hands behind his head. He was rich now. He had been rewarded for marrying a girl nobody in his right mind would have married. His father-in-law had given him a new Buick Roadmaster, an all-electric home, and had made him manager of his most prosperous office, his Ilium office, where Billy could expect to make at least thirty thousand dollars a year. That was good. His father had been only a barber.

As his mother said, “The Pilgrims are coming up in this the world.”


Kurt Vonnegut          1969

Warrior Poet Mental Yoga 37 (War)

Pretext: In this novel, the character Billy is at present imprisoned as an earthling specimen in a Zoo on the planet Tralfamadore. The exchange below occurs between him and the alien observers who live on that world. Billy is recounting the non-fictional history of primary source/observation (actually observed by Kurt Vonnegut in WW II). The character of Billy represents a human who has lost touch with concrete reality in a number of ways due to the traumatic experiences of his life. His fictional experiences are incorporated with historical reality throughout the novel.

But the subject of war never came up until Billy brought it up himself. Somebody in the zoo crowd asked him through the lecturer what the most valuable thing he learned on Tralfamadore was so far, and Billy replied, “How the inhabitants of a whole planet can live in peace! As you now, I am from a planet that has been engaged in senseless slaughter since the beginning of time. I myself have seen the bodies of schoolgirls who were boiled alive in a water tower by my own country men, who were proud of fighting pure evil at the time.” This was true. Billy saw the boiled bodies in Dresden. “And I have lit my way in a prison at night with candles from the fat of human beings who were butchered by the brothers and fathers of those schoolgirls who were boiled. Earthlings must be the terrors of the Universe! If other planets aren’t now in danger from Earth, they soon will be. So tell me a secret so I can take it back to Earth and save us all: How can a planet live at peace?”

Slaughterhouse Five

Kurt Vonnegut          1969

Warrior Poet Mental Yoga 36

We don’t fall from grace.

We run like hell and triumphantly jump off of the cliff with all of our might.

After flying for whatever period of time, we crash hard into the ground…..hopefully surviving the impact.

We get up and pretend like the whole damn thing was an incidental accident.

How could God, the perpetually hoodwinked fool, ever see through such a willfully orchestrated charade?

How could he or anyone else for that matter, ever pass judgement on such a “fall”?

Cribb          2014