He told me it was his life’s work
To write a definitive study of ‘Finnegan’s Wake’.
I thought of the word teleological but I didn’t say it.
Have you read it? he asked,
But wondered why he would
Spend so much time trying to unravel
A ball of literary string.
It took Joyce seventeen years to write
And it had taken him twenty five years
To not finish his study.
So I read ‘Dubliners’
At least I made the effort.
Oh Dubliners is all very well, he smiled,
But until you can come to terms with and
Understand the intricacies of ‘Finnegan’s Wake’…
Well I’m sure you’ll agree.
the most colossal leg pull in literature
as a quote came into my head but I didn’t say it.
You really should read it, you know.
Oh I’ve read it, I lied
But I prefer the musical version
With Fred Astaire and Hayley Mills.
At that point the academic really hit the fan.
Copyright © Kevin Cadwallender 2015