Graham Greene on Pools.....

No one can give you the chills like Graham Greene:

(Dear Readers, please see previous blog entry first for linear storyline if that interests you; otherwise, steal yourself....)

"I followed him down the path to the bathing-pool.... It was empty of water now. My torch lit the shallows and a litter of leaves.

“’Other end,’ Joseph told me, standing quite still, not going any nearer. Doctor Philipot must have walked up to the narrow cave of shadow made by the diving-plank, and now he lay in a crouched position below it with his knees drawn towards his chin, a middle-aged foetus ready dressed for burial in his neat grey suit. He had cut his wrists first and then his throat to make sure. Above the head was the dark circle of the pipe. We had only to turn on the water to wash the blood away: he had been as considerate as possible. He could not have been dead for more than a few minutes. My first thoughts were selfish ones: you cannot be blamed if a man kills himself in your swimming-pool….” (p. 53).
~from The Comedians

No wonder PP remembered this scene.

Not that such a ‘situation’ would ever occur in the downtown Oakland YMCA empty under construction Jacuzzi…..


Nah, everyone’s way too happy here and would never consider bloodying the Jacuzzi. Yet PP wonders why Dr. Philipot thought of the empty pool for his last deed. Mr. Brown attributes it to ‘consideration’, yet PP wonders if that’s really the reason.

Maybe Dr. P was a swimmer and wanted to end his life where he’d been most happy? Maybe he remembered the days of glory at the Hotel Trianon before Haiti’s evil dictator, Papa Doc, and the corrupt, Tontons Macoute. The days of fancy cocktails and frolicking in the pool and as Mr. Brown recalls,

“….By midnight some of them (the visiting American Tourists) would be swimming in the pool naked. Once I looked out of my window at two in the morning. There was a great yellow moon and a girl was making love in the pool. She had her breasts pressed against the side and I couldn’t see the man behind her. She didn’t notice me watching her; she didn’t notice anything. That night I thought before I slept, ‘I have arrived’” (p. 51,)
~ The Comedians

Now why hadn’t PP remembered this sexy pool scene instead of the icky bloody body pool scene?

There’s definitely something wrong with her memory cells. She’s gonna work on this for future pool literary memory recall: Pool Sex over Pool Suicide.

If she can hone this, and she thinks she can, then like Mr. Brown she will ‘have arrived.’


Ian said…
It could be the new religion. When life is tough and all else fails, when notions of pool suicide float to the surface, think of Grahame Green and choose pool sex instead. You did it, PP, you found a cure for depression. Does that make you the new pool guru?

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