Tuesday, May 10, 2011

The Plumed Serpent by D.H. Lawrence

Every since I moved here I have been trying to get a copy of The Plumed Serpent. D. H. Lawrence lived in Chapala when he wrote this book. It was first published in 1926. Finally one day over a week ago I ran into a friend at the Lake Chapala Society with it under her arm. She said she was going to return it on Monday so I made an extra effort on the coming Monday to meet her at the library and immediately check it out as she returned it. I don't know if it was worth that effort or not. This is one of the strangest books I have ever read and I read two or three books a week.  I have read a lot of strange books.

When I broke my ankle and was stuck in a chair for months I read all his other books that were in the library here. His writing is very mystical.  I loved different sections of his books and had to force myself to wade through other sections. He always wrote about nature and our connection to it. He didn't have a lot of respect for society. It was the individual that he honored, the individual in relationship with nature. But this book, The Plumed Serpent, seems to have gone off the rails.  It is about a man who decides to replace the Catholic Religion with his own religion of Quetzalcoatl. He puts himself up as Quetzalcoatl, one of the ancient Gods.

Some of the passages are interesting when he describes what this area was like at that time. I had to skip pages and pages of long poems written in praise of this new religion. I am not much into that kind of stuff. He made many statements about the nature of the Mexicans, sometimes they are flattering and sometimes they are mean.  He wrote about the HOT BLOOD. I couldn't begin to count how many times he mentioned hot blood and the blood. He was obsessed with it. It seemed to answer all of life's mysteries, the hot blood.  The word DARK is in it countless times too. The darkness, the dark skin of the natives, the dark eyes, the dark soul, etc.....   Enough already.   I was very disappointed in this book. Many of his books are about the dominance of men over women and he seemed to have worshiped the male body.  I am glad I have finally waded through it.

I just picked two pages at random. I counted the number of times the word BLOOD was mentioned. Thirty times in two pages!

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