“Two worlds touch here. You think men have power to call forth what they will? Evoke a world, awake or sleeping? Make it breathe and then set out upon it figures which a glass gives back or which the sun acknowledges? Quicken those figures with one’s own joy and despair? Can a man be so hid from himself?
You call forth the world God has formed and that world only. Nor is this life of yours by which you set such store your doing. However you may choose to tell it.
Our decisions do not have some alternative. We may contemplate a choice, but we pursue one path only.”
He is speaking of dreams, but also about the creative process behind writing fiction, or is he talking about being a fictional character. Or are we all just a minor players in God’s great novel. It is a well written book, but the story of the dream as told by the Mexican drifter to the aging main character at the end of the book was difficult to follow, and I am sure meant as a commentary on the connection between fiction and life, dreams and life, all human endeavor. I will have to go back and read it again, maybe in a month or two to see if I can pull more out of it. It is quite packed with juicy ideas.
Of the three books in the border trilogy I liked the second, “The Crossing“, the best. It was consistently compelling throughout. I felt as if I was well within the skin the main character, and at the end I sat alone in the rain and cried. At the end of this one I was left with a big question mark. I think something important was there, but I am still not sure.
As always McCarthy’s crisp and literate prose is a joy to read. Whenever I read one of his books, I feel like I know more about the English language and how to use it to it’s best advantage.