Exactingly Delighted

blooms library

Harold Bloom’s home library, photographed in June. Credit Tanya Marcuse.

Scholar and literary critic Harold Bloom has died at the age of 89. Dwight Garner hits memorable notes in his tribute to Bloom, who in one of over 40 books launched an attack “from a crenelated embankment” on critics and scholars whom Bloom termed “a rabblement of lemmings.”

It was impossible to read deeply in Bloom without him flooring you with feeling. “Walt Whitman,” he wrote, “overwhelms me, possesses me, as only a few others — Dante, Shakespeare, Milton — consistently flood my entire being.” In today’s world, there is competition to be more concerned than anyone else. In Bloom’s, there was competition to be the most exactingly delighted.

(Dwight Garner, “Harold Bloom, A Prolific Giant and Perhaps the Last of a Kind,” NYTimes, 10-15-19)

(c) 2019 JMN

About JMN

I live in Texas and devote much of my time to easel painting on an amateur basis. I stream a lot of music, mostly jazz, throughout the day, and watch Netflix and Prime Video for entertainment. I like to read and memorize poetry.
This entry was posted in Commentary and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Exactingly Delighted

  1. Eric Wayne says:

    “In today’s world, there is competition to be more concerned than anyone else. In Bloom’s, there was competition to be the most exactingly delighted.”

    Not everything that comes after what went before is progress. Sometimes we need to retrace our steps, see what has worked well in the past, and abandon experfiments that fail.

  2. Book shelves! I like book shelves, full of books. So did Harold, so does Warner. So do you!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.