Slow Train to Jacksonville

and yet another entry written in English…

Recently, I’ve been reading the ‘legendary’ Out-of-Print Publications of J.D. Salinger which includes (as far as I know) his 22 stories only appeared in magazines but never transferred to a book because of Salinger’s prohibition. If you have, like me, suffered for years for just the probability of finally reading Hapworth 16, 1924 but at the end got bored and pissed of all the (non-)developments, then you can guess the degree of my joy when I acquired this set of stories. The collection begins with the 1940 dated The Young Folks and ends with the Salinger’s final published item, Hapworth 16, 1924. For further reference, I’m including the publication details of all the Salingers:

    Under-published stories

  1. The Young Folks
    Story XVI, March-April 1940, pages 26-36

  2. Go See Eddie
    The Kansas Review VII, December 1940, pages 121-124

  3. The Hang of It
    Collier’s CVIII, July 12 1941, page 22

  4. The Heart of a Broken Story
    Esquire XVI, September 1941, Page 32, 131-133

  5. The Long Debut of Lois Taggett
    Story XXI, September/October 1942, pages 28-34

  6. Personal Notes on an Infantryman
    Collier’s CX, December 12 1942, page 96

  7. The Varioni Brothers
    Saturday Evening Post CCXVI, July 17 1943, pages 12-13, 76-77

  8. Both Parties Concerned
    Saturday Evening Post CCXVI, February 26 1944, pages 14, 47
    Originally to be titled Wake Me When it Thunders

  9. Soft Boiled Sergeant
    Saturday Evening Post CCXVI, April 15 1944, pages 18, 32, 82-85
    Originally to be titled Death of a Dogface

  10. Last Day of the Last Furlough
    Saturday Evening Post CCXVII, July 15 1944, pages 26-27, 61-62, 64

  11. Once a Week Won’t Kill You
    Story XXV, November/December 1944, pages 23-27

  12. A Boy in France
    Saturday Evening Post CCXVII, March 31 1945, pages 21, 92

  13. Elaine
    Story XXV, March/April 1945, pages 38-47

  14. This Sandwich Has No Mayonnaise
    Esquire XXIV, October 1945, pages 54-56, 147-149

  15. The Stranger
    Collier’s CXVI, December 1 1945, pages 18, 77

  16. I’m Crazy
    Collier’s CXVI, December 22 1945, pages 36, 48, 51

  17. Slight Rebellion Off Madison
    The New Yorker 22, December 1946, 76-79 or 82-86

  18. A Young Girl in 1941 with No Waist at All
    Mademoiselle 25, May 1947, pages 222-223, 292-302

  19. The Inverted Forest
    Cosmopolitan, December 1947, pages 73-109

  20. A Girl I Knew
    Good Housekeeping 126, Feb 1948, pages 37, 186-196
    Originally to be titled Wien, Wien

  21. Blue Melody
    Cosmopolitan, September 1948, pages 50-51, 112-119

    The Catcher in the Rye
    Boston: Little, Brown, 1951, 277 pages

    Nine Stories
    Boston: Little, Brown, 1953, 302 pages

  1. A Perfect Day for Bananafish
    The New Yorker, January 31, 1948, pages 21-25

  2. Uncle Wiggily in Connecticut
    The New Yorker, March 20, 1948, pages 30-36

  3. Just Before the War with the Eskimos
    The New Yorker, June 5, 1948, pages 37-40, 42, 44, 46

  4. The Laughing Man
    The New Yorker, March 19, 1949, pages 27-32

  5. Down at the Dinghy
    Harpers CXCVIII, April, 1949, pages 87-91

  6. For Esmé – with Love and Squalor
    The New Yorker, April 8, 1950, pages 28-36

  7. Pretty Mouth and Green my Eyes
    The New Yorker, July 14, 1951, pages 20-24

  8. De Daumier-Smith’s Blue Period
    World Review XXXIX, May, 1952, pages 33-48

  9. Teddy
    The New Yorker, January 31, 1953, pages 26-34, 36, 38, 40-41, 44-45

    Franny and Zooey
    Boston: Little, Brown, 1961, 201 pages

  1. Franny
    The New Yorker, January 29, 1955, pages 24-32, 35-36, 38, 40, 42-43

  2. Zooey
    The New Yorker, May 4, 1957, pages 32-42, 44, 47-48, 50, 52, 54, 57-59, 62, 64, 67-68, 70, 73-74, 76-78, 80-82, 87-90, 92-96, 99-102, 105-106, 108-112, 115-122, 125-139

    Raise High the Roof Beam, Carpenters and Seymour: An Introduction
    Boston: Little, Brown, 1963, 248 pages

  1. Raise High the Roof Beam, Carpenters
    The New Yorker, November 19, 1955, pages 51-58, 60, 62, 65-66, 70, 72-74, 76, 78-80, 83-84, 86, 88-90, 92, 94-98, 101-102, 104-105, 107-112, 114-116

  2. Seymour: An Introduction
    The New Yorker, June 6, 1959, pages 42-52, 54, 57, 60, 62, 64, 66-68, 71-72, 74, 76-78, 80, 82, 84, 89, 90-102, 105-116, 119

    Hapworth 16, 1924
    The New Yorker, June 19, 1965, pages 32-113

I remember myself (must be around 1993/94, being a lycee student) aimlessly scanning the New Yorker magazines in the USA Embassy’s Library archives in the hope of stumbling a rare Salinger story. Have I told that I love internet? 8)

Anyway, as I’ve said earlier, nowadays I’m into these stories. Last year I’ve re-read Franny and Zooey and I will re-read Raise High the Roof Beam, Carpenters and Seymour: An Introduction before tuckling with Hapworth 16, 1924. When Edip Cansever’s poem collection were published by Yapı Kredi, they had included even the poems that Cansever didn’t consider to select. He had purposely omitted these poems, which mostly were earlier ones, because he did not find them as impressive as the latter ones. This, I can understand and blame the Yapı Kredi for conducting such an ill-intended collection. But I guess Salinger’s version of prohibition is a completely another type. In Edip Cansever’s version, he rejects the works because he finds that they lack something the others don’t. Salinger prohibits the republishing not because -I think- he thinks those stories are inferior or anything but because the potential readers don’t deserve them, or more likely he just detests more fuss that will be unavoidable. After all, we live in a world with the Harper Lee example in it.

There’s this thing with me and the literature I had read in past times. In the case of novels, I usually remember the plot with or without its ending and one or more characters and their names after 5-6 years. If it is one of those smash-in-the-face for me as in the case of Michel Butor’s La Modification or Sartre’s L’aige de la raison then things are a little bit exceptional and in these rare cases I sort of remember approx. 70% of all the teeny-meeny details. But this isn’t the case with the stories. However good a story is, given 2 years, I tend to forget everything. This defunction may be considered an adventegous one because you never happen to have, like, running out of Salingers. Of course I never forget the end of the A Perfect Day for Banana Fish, after all, I’m something little more than a 3-second memorizer fish – I hope you understood what I’m trying to say.

Back to the Out-of-Print Publications, the first few ones heavily resemble to O. Henry stories with the punch lines they deliver at the end. You’ve got the introduction, the development and the finishing with all the ties knot and with a punch line delivered at you. But, as the years goes by, meaning if you start reading backwards, you find yourself with the familiar seas where everything is naive and the narrator pokes his head once in a while out of the story and reminds you who he is actually and what are the possible outcomes going to be…

One additional reason for Salinger to keep this stories from publishing may be that, they (the latter ones) tend to contain a very high level of sorrow and grief. In more than one story, some specific letters are never answered back, the characters tell that they will keep in touch or at least call tomorrow but never do that and then wham! their correspondents came up dead or unreachable.

Among the stories, I can easily say that The Inverted Forest was one of the best Salingers I’ve read. Also A Girl I Knew and the Blue Melody are good enough to stop the world in its tracks even if for a minute or two. The O. Henry type punch lines are still there, the plot makes you rush for the end where you know something heartbreaking will be waiting for you but the indifference of the narrator keeps you from exchanging the humane feeling with the eye-watering melodrama – this is a quality I have encountered while reading the stories Raymond Carver and another New Yorker-er, Haruki Murakami (especially his A Perfect Day for Kangooro and Tony Takitani stories). Although it is kind of natural for Murakami to arouse similar feelings since he is known to be into Salinger with the translations and such.

So, enough for today. To summarize, it is really good meeting a favourite author of yours with works you had known but could not reach. And I thank to internet and one Miss Grace Dela Pena for some reasons. By the way, I will not reply nor approve nor supply any of requests to mail/send these stories but if you want them so bad, I suggest you to go fishing for a nice little song called “Slow Train to Jacksonville” which resides in the Blue Melody. Look over the Hungarian skies, where the grass is green and the web is free, so to say! 😉

-over and out-

P.S.: …but the most important aspect of Salinger’s is, I think, whenever I finish another of his stories, I feel like I’m breathing the same air with my honorary blood brother Doğan wherever he is. 8) After all, what is it to have an honorary blood brother if you can’t share the Salinger stories?..

“Slow Train to Jacksonville” için 2 yorum

  1. Old ways… — I remember myself as an undergraduate, searching in the METU library’s bound journal section. I am still an MS and it was not more than 3-4 years ago that Physical Review’s all volumes were digitilized…and here, we don’t even have a journal’s section; we only have the online ones.

    By the way; why English?

    -end of transmission-

  2. Old ways, old days.. — In response to your
    > By the way; why English?
    query:

    Because, I wanted to be as universal as possible and thought that it would be a good idea for the martians and our other alien friends could also read and comprehend what I was trying to say. After all, all the species I see in the SF series tend to speak English (with the exception of Farscape and THHGTTG). Actually, all I’m saying in this reply is that, universal is the worst word I ever happened to learn. If you call this weird, how about Miss. Universe? 8P 8)

    Aaaaand, also: I prefer e-book to paper-books, over and over again. Paper books just don’t “fit in”.

    -2400baud connected-

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