Category Archives: literature

“How are you friend?”

“Every soul has its own individual language, often unspoken, or lamely feebly haltingly spoken; but a true fit for that man, and perfectly adapted to his use.—The truths I tell to you or any other may not be plain to … Continue reading

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    The other day, I used a cliché in conversation with a friend. I had shared an audiotape of an interesting lecture with him. “If you don’t find it interesting,” I said, “I’ll eat my hat.” He joked that … Continue reading

Posted in Elinor Handy Smith (Roger W. Smith's mother), general interest, literature, personal reminiscences of Roger W. Smith | Tagged , , , , , | 1 Comment

“Black Coffee”

  Let us take a day in Balzac’s working life, a day typical of thousands. Eight o’clock in the evening. The citizens of Paris have long since finished their day’s work and left their offices, shops, or factories. After having … Continue reading

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an exchange re Tolstoy (and some things I learned) … plus, why it pays to keep one’s eye on others’ writing

    Elisabeth van der Meer has a new post on her site about Russian literature, which I follow avidly. “Tolstoy and Homer”   Ms. van der Meer notes: “… Tolstoy considered himself equal to Homer. He was so … Continue reading

Posted in literature, Tolstoy, writing (the craft of writing; good vs. bad writing; my training, experience, and lessons re same) | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

on aesthetic and cultural appreciation of literature and film; my favorite directors (小津安二郎は日本の映画監督・脚本家)

      以下、このエッセイの日本語への翻訳の一部を参照してください。 (Japanese translation of my comments regarding the director Yasujirō Ozu is appended below.)     *****************************************************   on aesthetic and cultural appreciation of literature and film; my favorite directors (小津安二郎は日本の映画監督・脚本家) by Roger W. Smith     I … Continue reading

Posted in aesthetics, cinema, literature, my favorite films, my reading; observations on reading | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

English and Shakespeare

          I am extremely grateful that English is my native language. In my humble opinion — it’s been said countless times — ’tis a glorious language. So rich in its origins and vocabulary; the history and … Continue reading

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a disappointing review of two lost Whitman works

    re: “Two New Old Books That Show Walt Whitman’s Different Selves” New York Times Book Review August 30, 2017     hi, Zack —   This review by Ted Genoways  is okay, but nothing more. Why did … Continue reading

Posted in literature, Walt Whitman | Tagged , , , , , , | 3 Comments