i missed Carver

I missed Carver. His stories and what they meant for me. All that atmosphere. All that me.

Kindling, What Would You Like To See? and Dreams are some of Carver's uncollected short stories. I don't know why but I am always afraid to say things about Carver. Maybe because his prose lets us have our personal and intimate interpretations. And thus I'm afraid of showing too much of myself. Or maybe because of my 'fiasco' with Cathedral [well, I didn't see it as a fiasco, but my professor sure did :))]Whatever it is, those who read Carver's short stories and know how minimalist fiction works hopefully can understand me.

For those who haven't read this kind of fiction (like Hemingway, Carver and, why not, even Tomas Rivera's Y no se lo trago la tierra), in minimalism (whether it's in design, music, visual arts or literature) everything appears in its fundamental features. There are, for instance, short stories that are two pages long and still they can move mountains. One word can trigger numerous impressions and feelings. It's more or less how stream-of-consciousness functions: an event in the present generates an avalanche of memories. Like Proust's madeleine, only this time it can be a word or a simple, natural sentence.

And to show you all these in action, in the preface of the volume containing the uncollected fiction and prose of Raymond Carver (entitled after the short story Call If You Need Me), Tess Gallacher wrote "Endings, where Ray always worked hardest, were, in some instances, left as one leaves a meal when the phone rings. We simply let those last moments reverberate, allowing the story to come to rest."

And now let's take a glimpse at some endings: "Then he put the pen down and held his head in his hands for a moment. Pretty soon he got up and undressed and turned off the light. He left the window open when he got into bed. It was okay like that." (this one's from Kindling)
"'That's too bad. I'm sorry to hear it. You gave them the keys, didn't you? We've said good-bye. I guess we can go now.'
'Yes', I said. 'I guess we can'." (What Would You Like To See?)

Just like that 'cause 'just like that' is how life really is.


  1. I miss Carver too ...It's one of the writers who has made a difference for me, who influenced me. LESS shall always be MORE, all the winners will take nothing, and Life itself changes its shape after reading and understanding Raymond Carver ...


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