By Guy Davenport
encouraged by means of assets as various as Virgil, Dumas, and the day-by-day newspaper, the eight tales in man Davenport’s Eclogues reflect the wide-ranging passions and curiosities of 1 of America’s most unusual and agile writers. Taking the shape of diary entries and pastoral poetry, and with allusions to Italo Calvino and the Greek gods, those tales are best examples of Davenport’s ingenuity and mastery of technique.
Eclogues includes philosophical explorations and portrayals of deeply human feelings with tales akin to “The bushes of Lystra,” Davenport’s meditation at the intersection of early Christian doctrine and Greek fable, and “On a few traces of Virgil,” within which a gaggle of youngsters experiments with sexuality in the course of a lazy summer season in Bordeaux. The author’s playfulness and defiance of expectancies make for a desirable and mind-blowing read.
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