Strange Oasis

‘Looking together united them.’


Recently I went to The Moon and Sixpence and back again. I’m glad I did it—even though it was a book I hadn’t cared for the first time. A second reading confirmed my opinion that this book does not represent W. Somerset Maugham’s finest hour, finest writing, finest sentiments. And certainly that man needed to jettison some prejudices. (ugh…he writes from a time capsule and a select universe) There are moments of insightful quotability–this is W. Somerset Maugham, after all–and there are moments when the narrator’s distance from his protagonist, spliced haphazardly with the overtly gushing affectations of a string of colorful characters who tell us their impressions in after images about the protagonist…becomes tiresome. Still, Maugham poses some intriguing scenarios regarding art, the artistic process, and who it is that creates ‘art’. It was this particular focus I wanted to revisit. Continue reading