This I have struggled with. I saw a cracking quote from her and by chance the next day saw this in a bookshop, had some thoughts on serendipity. Now I realise that coincidence is nothing more than coincidence.
It is divided into five sections, the first of which I shall return to, but was a pretty good start; the second was a series of minuscule poems about god, sometimes as few as four lines long, with titles like ‘The God Fit’ or ‘The God Coup’ or ‘ God’s Bouquet of Undying Love’…etcetera… I found nothing there to interest me; the next section TV Men is again broken into series…seemingly of Classical Greeks mis-spelt (Hektor and Sokrates) as if the film of Troy was made in a ‘Death Valley shoot’. The best word I can find for this section is ‘arch’, in the sense of ‘knowing’; I think I finally lost patience in section four ‘The Fall of Rome: a traveller’s guide’ which is little more than a series of epithets, numbered I-LXX, some of which were just one-liners, take V: ‘Anna Xenia will be waking now’, or XIII: ‘ A stranger makes no fissure’, or perhaps, XXXV: ‘Forgets to telephone’…
The final section consists of epigrams, some of which are reasonably engaging or amusing, others less so; ‘On Disappointments in Music: Prokofiev was ill and could not attend the performance of his First Piano Sonata played by somebody else. He listened to it on the telephone.” Is one entire entry.
The first section ‘The Glass Essay’ is 44 pages long. It ranges across topics, like visiting her mother in order that they may together visit her father, in a nursing home, an hour’s taxi ride away, as well as the end of a love affair, but always returning to musings on the Brontes, their lives, their writing, muddying their facts and their fiction in a beguiling way. On reading this section I fully expected to love the whole of the book…but in all honesty, I found little to detain me and nothing that I want to return to.