The New Bedford Whaling Museum's Moby-Dick Marathon is an annual non-stop reading of Herman Melville's literary masterpiece. The multi-day program of entertaining activities and events is presented every January. Admission to the Marathon is free.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

On Beckett's birthday

Samuel BeckettSamuel Beckett born April 13, 1906.
Was there one among them to put himself in my place, to feel how removed I was then from him I seemed to be, and in that remove what strain, as of hawsers about to snap? It's possible. Yes, I was straining towards those spurious deeps, their lying promise of gravity and peace, from all my old poisons I struggled towards them, safely bound.
- Molloy

I feel strained, half stranded, as ropes that tow dismasted frigates in a gale; and I may look so. But ere I break, ye'll hear me crack; and till ye hear that, know that Ahab's hawser tows his purpose yet.
- Chapter CXXXIV


  1. Intriguing juxtaposition. Does Beckett mention Melville or Moby-Dick in his letters?

  2. He does, at least once that I know of.

    Beckett's letter to Thomas MacGreevy, 4Aug1932, "I bought Moby Dick today for 6d. That's more like the real stuff. White whales & natural piety."

    If you have a copy of Delbanco's Melville, look on page xiii.

  3. Thanks for the tip! I don't have Delbanco, but it's on my unwritten to-be-read list.