Tuesday, 2 May 2017

Madeleine (May)

Re-reading Proust. His choice of a cake called Magdalene is a risky tribute, a bold connection. The women-filled pages of Combray Chapter One culminate with the eating of food named, indirectly, after the First Witness to the Resurrection. Marcel says this happened on Sunday mornings “because that day I did not go out before it was time for Mass.” Tribute, maybe; connection, surely; and guide to how memory may be both unwilled and then willed. The madeleine, dipped in tea, is discovery and invocation of the Muse; scallop-shelled cakes, reminder of Saint James, that provide one guide to Proust’s procedure.

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