A Son at the Front (Library of America) by Edith Wharton

By Edith Wharton

Encouraged through a tender guy Edith Wharton met in the course of her war relief paintings in France, A Son on the Front(1923) opens in Paris on July 30, 1914, as Europe totters near to struggle.

Expatriate American painter John Campton, whose in simple terms son George, having been born in Paris, needs to record for accountability within the French army, struggles to maintain his son clear of front while grappling with the ethical implications of his actions. A poignant meditation on artwork and ownership, fidelity and responsibility, A Son on the Front is Wharton’s indelible tackle the warfare novel.

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Imagined lives we posit in the bungalows, passing, counting, with another part of the mind, the phone poles. Stood there broke and rapidly becoming hungry, staring at nickels and pennies at the bottom of the fountain. Dear Quine, sentences are not synonymous when they mean the same proposition. How the heel rises and ankle bends to carry the body from one stair to the next. This page is slower. Forced outside first thing, just to purchase food for one’s breakfast. The even keel. Chalk dust. Write and sunbathe at the same time, or ride the bus, or eat dry cereal in a bowl of milk on K etja k 17 the upended cable spool you use for a table.

Tall glass of tawny port. Headlights, streetlights, lit living rooms. A pleasure and discomfort in the knowledge of having become, by the fact of your absence, the focal point. Borate bomber’s song. Shadows between houses leave earth cool and damp. A scaffold around light. Retina burn. A tooth gone in the root. A slick gaggle of ambassadors. Tension manager’s domain. 26 K etja k Astronauts holding hands, adrift in the sky. Caves of the tuna. We ate them. Each ear pierced in four places. The flag.

Calling out, as though after a large dog. His friend forgot her sandals. The map is not the territory. Tiger balm. Man on the bus, scavenger, sips cough medicine. We stopped for hot chocolate topped with whipped cream, and to discuss the Sicilian Defense. Acres wake, bugs of the soil shivering about their business, day’s light precedes its heat. A book of short poems to be called Spare Parts. Yonder. The odor in towels, the oil in skin. Exorcise your monkey. Early morning mental system. The poem as a form sensed prior to the writing, as the act thereof, as a text fixed upon paper, as the act of reading, as the memory of one of the above.

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