Kent Russell, “It Stinks”

On my way out, downwind from the front entrance, I really got a whiff of the thing. It smelled like an air horn sounds. Like cosmological smelling salt. It smelled like the best poetry, that which helps a man “reclaim substance and sense, and physical and psychological reality.

On the corpse flower’s “indifferent, cosmic energy.”

Kent Russell and John Jeremiah Sullivan war for my humanist non-fiction heart. They’re on another level.

I am so spiteful. I see recollective Sunday brunches among friends, and I want to walk up to them and ask “You’re all best buds? Really? You’re all ready and willing to bear the weight of love’s deep and defuse obligations? Oh, word? It’s not just that you’ve self-selected from this sinking ship the people most amenable to your personal brand of resentment and narcissism–your mimetic desire–to float on in a life raft together over bitter water for at least as long as supplies last?” Then I chokeslam myself through their table.

– Kent Russell, I Am Sorry To Think I Have Raised A Timid Son