Okay, here's the thing..... I HATE not getting things. Most of what I read I take in, I comprehend, I move along, but one of the stories in Fragile Things has boggled my mind and I am finally asking for help. *sigh* (And I HATE asking for help!) Closing Time managed to creep me out without my understanding it, now I would like to understand it so I can get the full effect of the creepieness. Can anyone lend a hand? A brief explanation? It would be greatly appreciated. (And I swear, SWEAR, I'm not an idiot. Really, I'm not....)
|Weirdy American Tart Thing|
I'm sure you're not! I can only offer a hug, not a helping hand, I'm such a bad fan that I haven't read it yet. But you've tweaked my interest and I promise to read it soon so that I too can be boggled.
Welcome aboard! If you care to wander into the World's End section you'll find a massive party going on. That's where we babble about oh.. anything that pops into our heads.
Minister of Kraftwerk in the Realm of U & P, Order of the Pineapple with frond for advancement in Nap studies.
The brain: not always amenable to logic. ~Hive
Umm, just give a quick summary to jog my memory, and I'll disect the story for you. Just now my slippery mind isn't placeing story with title.
*...Listening to the Chambers of your Heart...*
I didn't really get it either. Read it again yesterday - I'm still blank...
The guy in the club, is he Simon? A ghost? Were the boys ghosts?
Please help! Someone. Anyone.
If the story is remembered correctly, I believe he is the one boy who lived. If you notice though, a lot of the stories are tied together through details. The Green Door and Red Imp Knocker appear 2-3 times in the book, i think. The other spot they appear for sure is the story "Instructions" on pg 191. Of course Instructions houses references to almost all the other stories, the seasons telling stories, etc
Oh, yeah! That was the one about the boys and the creepy house with the red imp knocker...and I noticed that it was repeated a couple times in the other stories, too.
I think that the story is relating a terrifying childhood expirience, but I also see it as an extended metaphor for growing up and losing the child-like innocent naivety about the world. Seeing the imp made the narrator see a part of himself as an older child that he did not want to happen. He saw that in his choice of friends, he was being pulled into a more adult world much too fast. So he ran. He ran away from what terrified him. As for the ending, I think it's up for the reader to decide....I've only read it once, but I'll go back on it now to take an in-depth look.
*...Listening to the Chambers of your Heart...*
|Poisoner of Chonae|
Personally - and please bear in mind that I'm doing this from memory - I got the impression that there was a semi-autobiographical element to this story. Perhaps it was an allusion to the ambiguity of identity and how that can be so easily lost? Or innocence? It also resonates with the story in Smoke and Mirrors about Moorcock. Was there not also some caveat about how none of it really happened that way. Sorry if my lack of memory's only adding to confusion, but I'm writing from Belfast and it is St Paddy's Day, so the shamrock's getting well drowned.
cause and effect:
the best often die by their own hand just to get away, and those left behind can never quite understand why anybody
would ever want to get away
Charles Bukowski Septuagenarian Stew
|has been eaten by a grue.|
(I think the question was a what-happened?, not a what-does-it-mean? so that's how I'm answering. plenty of good responses from the other angle.)
I think I'm stealing this idea from something. in fact, I know I am. I just can't remember where I picked it up. but I think the boys our narrator met were...kinda like residual images of the actual boys. obviously, the narrator's too young to have met Simon when he was actually a child, and, since Simon is still alive, the boys couldn't have been ghosts when the narrator interacted with them. so, yeah. residual image somesuch sumfink.
what was really interesting to me was the father. just who the hell was he, and what did he do?
~ fLame Woosh ~
Elite Special Force Procrastinator, trained in High Arts of Extended Coffee Breaks and Master Linguist of the Water Cooler Conversation
Probably about a half-year too late on this, but if anyone's still interested, I've just written some thoughts on what's going on in "Closing Time" at http://ambiguities.wordpress.com/2008/09/01/closing-tim...-truth-of-the-story/
I do think that the old man at the end is Simon, for what it's worth, and that the boys in the story are a kind of ambiguous projection of their innocent childhood selves.
CLOSING TIME freaked me too. But the last page confused things with the guy with the patches on his jacket. He didn't need that for the story to work.
The unseen horror in the play house and the idea that the kids disappeared was horrible enough. I would say his best story, so far.This message has been edited. Last edited by: albie,
Will. In your thoughts on CLOSING TIME you have the painting of the picture preceding the events at the summer house. But there is no indication when the painting was made in the story.
The events at the playhouse occur WHILE the school is still open. Whereas the breaking into the school and the retreiving of the picture of the door imp happens AFTER the school has been closed down.
Did anyone else see a similarity with the pied piper story with CLOSING TIME?
I wonder if the playhouse was a false memory to cover up some sexual event. Father had his own games.
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twice in one day! poster has now been bannedThis message has been edited. Last edited by: Smaug,
I don't think it was a false memory per se, but an embellished one. I.e. there was a shed or some other place where father took the boys. The imp knocker is something that was seen, and remembered as the imp. Was it really an imp-shaped knocker? Who knows, but to Simon it's how he remembers it.
This is the creepiest story to me so far. Only because it seems that it was nothing more than a father abusing his three boys. Then the story is layered with the seemingly supernatural events which are really just the mind's reaction to unthinkable events.
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