“There is not now and never has been,” a man screamed at the Irish Times last weekend, “any such thing as ‘luminous‘ prose!”
“Nor ever,” Sebastian Delaney proclaimed to an empty kitchen, “will there be!”
“‘Liminal’,” he muttered, as he resumed reading, “as if every novel isn’t in some way ‘liminal’!”
Struggling to contain his irritation, it occurred to Delaney, who every Saturday turns first to the paper’s book reviews, that in its own way, literary criticism was every bit as cliched as soccer reporting.
“At least,” he warned the kitchen, “we still know what, ‘opened their account’ and ‘booked their place in the final’ actually mean.
But what do ‘luminous’ and ‘liminal’ mean when they’re trotted out – week in, week out – by people you can’t help suspecting are relying on a press release in the first place.
The noise finally woke David Bowie, prompting the cat to hiss at him.
“Luminous’, Bowie,” he inquired, helplessly. What does that even mean…”
“Can you read it in the dark?”