➠ [Epub] ➚ Meditations in Green By Stephen Wright ➪ – Motyourdrive.co.uk



10 thoughts on “Meditations in Green

  1. says:

    War and its aftermath the style of Meditations in Green is fancifully delirious and its narration is stark graphic Trips struck the match with a cavalier flourish and attempted for the second time to start his first pipe of the day Lungs wheezing like a pair of mildewed bellows, he sucked furiously on the black stem of his seasoned briar A wisp of pungent smoke came and went Well, bite my butt, he mumbled, scowling into the dead bowl This goddamn weather He tamped the springy contents down with a P 38 can opener, which shared the chain around his neck with a metallic swastika and a gold plated scarab beetle His dog tags he had ceremoniously deposited one moonless night inside a Buddhist tomb, one of many overgrown and send swept mounds heaped in apparently random fashion back at the perimeter like a distribution of shell craters seen in reverse stereoscopic lenses The rain makes the grass damp and hard to light It may seem to be fun but every man has turned into a set of phobias and psychoses And men keep dying The man blubbered, staring with horror at his left leg which rested now incongruously beside his head, upsidedown and unattached Well, shit, muttered Kraft and kicked the useless leg off into the underbrush The wounded man s white face looked as though someone had flicked a full fountain pen across it, a spattering of black marks like powder burns or bits of dirt driven by explosive force into the skin At his other end black blood drained into the ground Kneeling at his side, Doc quickly tied on the stump, stuck a needle in his arm Then he cut open the shirt Jesus Christ, said someone softly in anger and disbelief The chest resembled a plowed field The man looked up at Doc, a child s look, as one hand reached tentatively for his groin, asking in a dry voice, My balls, are my balls okay and Doc nodded, patting his forehead, and the man died.The war is over and life goes on but the main hero can t forget the past and he is full of angst and anxiety and he dreams to become a plant so that his life would ve been cool and calm and verdant I don t know, Grif, do I know you any You re out in the boonies This creepy apartment, your weird friends, hunkering down in the toilet all day The boonies Know what I think I think that war s got you bent out of shape You re all twisted up He began to chuckle quietly The war turned you around You ain t the same since you shipped out Yeah, you re all fucked up Wars end but phobias and psychoses remain.


  2. says:

    This is a book that has remained among my Top 10 since I first read it in about 1987 or so it was originally published in 1983 I really can t say enough about it, and while I recognize that war novels are not to everyone s taste, I have long encouraged everyone I know to read it, even if it takes them out of their comfort zone It s one of those novels that transcends its genre It is, quite simply, a classic or at least, it deserves to be And yet, so few people have ever heard of it, or of its author, Stephen Wright He is not very prolific his novels don t get a lot of popular press and aren t picked up for movie deals and honestly, his style is a little outside the mainstream to be really accessible.But, let me give you three reasons why, if you haven t ever heard of it or of Wright, you should consider checking out Meditations In Green 1 Wright employs some of the most beautiful language and wordplay I ve ever read to describe some of the most horrific images you will ever see rendered in print I am trying to find a quotation that does justice, but it s kind of like quoting Dylan it s ALL quotable, and it s very difficult to excerpt and retain the power of the whole piece, which needs to wash over you Sometimes, it s what he says directly sometimes it s the structure of long, run on sentences as insidious and dense as the jungle, or short machine gun wordbursts that puncture the page His prose sweeps you up in its rhythm until you can actually feel your blood pressure rise in response Sometimes, it s how he develops a scene and then ends abruptly with an unwritten thought it s what is implied, not what is written, that is so powerful This writing is so alive, it can be no less than a raging condemnation of the death and destruction it describes.2 The central character is a PTSD afflicted Vietnam veteran who was responsible for targeting areas for Agent Orange attack, and who now is going slowly or quickly crazy in an apartment in NYC some cement jungle, in counterpoint to the real one he s left half a world away Chapters of him at work and at war in Vietnam and him descending into the streets of the city and further into drug induced madness back in the world are interspersed with the meditations very short chapters told from the point of view of a houseplant Yes, really It s a brilliantly employed conceit Nature, growth, life juxtaposed with madness, death and destruction 3 Wright brings the hallucinogenic atrocity of Vietnam to life in detail and creates a testament to the insanity not just of that war, but of all wars IMHO, it is the finest anti war novel since Johnny Got His Gun by Dalton Trumbo It bears some stylistic similarity to JGHG, but it is entirely Wright s own unique, wonderful, horrendous and magnificent creation WARNING The language and images in this novel are vivid, brutal, obscene and graphic If you are easily offended by vulgarity, well you ll be offended But if you find unjust wars even offensive, then I would encourage you to keep in mind that the last thing an anti war novel should do is leave you feeling comfortable, or worry about offending the sensitive reader Bravo to Wright and to all who refuse to sanitize or glorify war, and who use language appropriately to describe that which is truly obscene.


  3. says:

    Stephen Wright s debut novel, first published in 1983, is a difficult one to categorize The blurb describes it as being sardonic, searing, seductive, and surreal It is certainly all of that.It is also overwritten, with sentences that cover an entire page and paragraphs that cover than a page After reading about ten or fifteen pages, I wasn t sure that I was going to be able to finish the book and after about thirty pages, I was almost positive that I wasn t In fact, I almost put it aside, but knowing that if I did I would never pick it up again, I soldiered on.The book consists of vignettes, some as short as a paragraph and others that last as much as twenty pages They alternate between a third person account of events that occurred during the war and a first person account of events that take place in a large American city after the war a war that never ends for the first person narrator, the book s central character At first, I was put off by the long sentences, the long paragraphs, and the alternating settings Eventually, however, I realized that while it was true that at times the book was chaotic to the point of being incoherent that what it was attempting to describe was also chaotic and incoherent It was at that point that I was able to adjust to the rhythm of the book and found myself not wanting to put it down.Walter Kendrick in his overall favorable review in the New York Times wrote, Wright s talent is impressive, though unruly And that some of the excesses of the book can be ascribed to its being a first novel, mulled over for at least ten years It tries to do too much to describe the war, its aftereffects, the psychology of drug addiction and most murkily the role that green plants play in all these matters Critic Nathaniel Rich in his review of the book wrote, A good war novel forces you to visualize, in vivid detail, the horror and dysfunction of combat A great war novel goes further it makes you fear the horror personally By that definition, Meditations in Green is a great war novel.I remember once reading that all war novels, by their very nature, are anti war novels, the reason being that any faithful depiction of the horror of combat would have to leave the reader with a visceral abhorrence of war Meditations in Green does that Further, it is than a novel about the Vietnam War It is in the tradition of Catch 22 and M A S H, a novel about the absurdity of war any war Those two novels contain some humorous moments, and so does Meditations in Green. But the humor in all three novels comes in the dark variety.The blurb also says that many consider Meditations in Green to be the greatest of all the Vietnam War novels I have always been partial to James Webb s Fields of Fire and Tim O Brien s The Things They Carried and the recent Matterhorn by Karl Marlantes I always recommend them to other readers I will also recommend Meditations in Green, but not without some reservations It may not be for everybody especially not for anybody who prefers a straightforward linear narration For the same reason, some people do not care for The Things They Carried. My advice for anyone who does decide to read it is that they stay the course Don t give up on it too early.Is Meditations in Green the greatest Vietnam War novel Well, maybe not, but it does belong in the conversation.


  4. says:

    The book cover states that this book is regarded by many as the best book ever about the Vietnam War, and having read most of the works considered part of the canon of that era, I in no small measure agree with the statement It is nothing short of brilliant The story like other works of that era is about a man s struggle to adapt back to society as a vet, with enough flashbacks that you understand his mental and emotional wrestling The prose is tight, the structure of the book is creative, the symbolism subtle as good a work as I ve read in the last five years.


  5. says:

    I m not the aficionado of the massive heaps of art, literature, film and music left in the wake of the Vietnam War that some of my friends are But this book and Robert Stone s Dog Soldiers transcend their peers on every possible level Note this book is not for the faint hearted Additionally, Wright will make you feel like you re on drugs, whilst writing about other people being on drugs This is not entirely a good thing.


  6. says:

    War, pot, insomnia, Jimi Hendrix, death, boredom and horrorand green Jungles, camouflage, paint, leaves, sunrises, and death in green and shades thereof.


  7. says:

    The man writes zero boring sentences And I felt like I didn t breathe during the last 30 pages of this book.


  8. says:

    Amazing writer.He s the kind of writer that makes me want to quit writing.


  9. says:

    The haphazard style, the cast of idiosyncratic grotesques, inevitably leads to comparison with Catch 22, but despite this the book stands up on its own It s interwoven by a neat plant, growth metaphor that ties it all together, as if the book were wrapped up tightly in a jungle vine The casual violence, the nihilism and surrealism are all present and correct but used in a deadening way like a heroin memory, like a discarded needle in a dilapidated squat Filled with apathy and numb pain, it speaks than an out and out black and white declaration of dissent could ever hope to From Trips psychosis, and his flawed hunt for the man who killed his dog, to the presentation of one soldier s idea that the whole war is a movie way before Stone, Kubrick et al, this is a book that demands to be read than once.


  10. says:

    taken me a while to get to thiswas smashed about the head by this, review later..I came to this book via Wright s Going Native which was as I called it lush, hyper real surreal and trippy and this is the same, prose that glows Maybe I learnt nothing new in relation to war maybe I m Vietnammed or war in general out What happens here covers familiar ground it combines the hallucinatory horror of Apocalypse Now released 3 years before with the absurdity of Catch 22 eg all the dogs in the camp compound are killed at the whim of one general i m guessing at rank, can t remember a sergeant spends all his time making a film of the war, getting the staff to recreate scenes But nevertheless it is a powerful and stunning indictment of war and its effects, and Wright is a superb writer and moralist But what s it like to kill somebody personally For the reader back home Intimate details please.I guess I d have to say it s like taking a shit You know, some are good and satisfying, some okay, some just plain messy, but one way or another, it s always nice to get the crap out.The following will give an idea of how the prose flows It is one of the gentle passages, I ve spared you the heads blown apart and the torture The helicopter shook and shook like a wet dog In a moment the gears and all the bolts would come loose, trickle out the bottom in a runny metallic shit. The engine sounded like gravel in a blender Griffin heard a voice in his ear, Waste those motherfuckers, oh goddam godamm, and his hands were shaking the machine gun and his arms were shaking too and Pimplechin shaking up and down beside him was helping to feed the belt into the gun that shook to the trees, the paddies, the huts, the bugs on the ground, the bugs everywhere, shaking and shaking, his own parts coming loose, sliding around like yolks in a pan, shaking the bolt out of the center of the world so a trillion agitated pieces come falling down like Christmas snow in a plastic ball in synchronised vibration until all the bugs were gone because the pilot had swung the damaged machine away to sputter along off the bone white coast above the unarmed sea.His achievement is to make the experience so vivid you feel it in your fingertips, feel the blood coursing round you, and make you glad you re here, in Birmingham, UK, on a bus or on the sofa, but also remembering how soldiers are out there now fighting in your name too, and how stupid and endless war is One war after another Maybe the only proper response for those caught up in it is to go mad like Claypool here, from Indiana, who stops speaking or responding to anything, or Trips who becomes obsessed with assassinating Sergeant Anstin, even after the war, tracking him down, mistaking innocent people for him Alternatively you could get blown away by drugs Each day was a tube you curled yourself into a ball and rolled through Zip Dark tube connected to dark tube, a tunnel to tumble down ZipHe glided over time in swift hydraulic comfort Faces were like cities, the night was a smoky black mirror, the sound of a single word filled the chamber of the universe he rode on cockroaches to the end of color, he watched machines dissolve into gray fluid that bubbled away into the ground.This book stands comparison to any of the great war books, like Tim O Brien s The Things They Carried, All Quiet on the Western Front, Johnson s Tree of Smoke, or the aforementioned Catch 22.


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Meditations in Green download Meditations in Green, read online Meditations in Green, kindle ebook Meditations in Green, Meditations in Green f84d082c291b Sardonic, Searing, Seductive And Surreal, The Award Winning Meditations In Green Is Regarded By Many As The Best Novel Of The Vietnam War It Is A Kaleidoscopic Collage That Whirls About An Indelible Array Of Images And Characters Perverted Winky, Who Opted For The Army To Stay Off Of Welfare Eccentric Payne, Who S Obsessed With The Film He S Making Of The War Bucolic Claypool, Who S Irrevocably Doomed To A Fate Worse Than Death Just To Mention A Few And Floating At The Center Of This Psychedelic Spin Is Spec James Griffin In Country, Griffin Studies The Jungle Of Carpet Bomb Photos As He Fights Desperately To Keep His Grip On Reality And Battling Addiction Stateside After His Tour, He Studies The Green Of Household Plants As He Struggles Mightily To Get His Sanity Back With Mesmerizing Action And Joycean Interior Monologues, Stephen Wright Has Created A Book That Is As Much An Homage To The Darkness Of War As It Is A Testament To The Transcendence Of Art