NABOKV-L post 0018996, Thu, 24 Dec 2009 12:55:13 -0200

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[NABOKOV-L] TOoL and a Person from Porlock
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One question, following Leland's comments (cf.VN-List, link to Boston Review) concerning Dmitri's reference in his preface to TOOL: "Dmitri Nabokov then writes "that, in putative retrospect, Nabokov would not have wanted me to become his Person from Porlock or allow little Juanita Dark-for that was the name, destined for cremation-to burn like a latter-day Jeanne d'Arc." The reader has to bend these references more than a little to put them into perspective. The person from Porlock who interrupted Coleridge's composition of "Kubla Khan" found the poet writing (not deceased) and interrupted his composition, rendering it thereby a fragment."

[QUERY] In "Dear Bunny, dear Volodya" (VN-Wilson's letters) I read, on letter 90, that Nabokov was sending 37 pages of a new novel with the title "The Person from Porlock" ( VN added that the entire manuscript would have 315 pages and that he developped "an idea which has never been treated before." I had missed this item while reading V-W letters to ask myself why did I never hear about this novel (which known novel did it become or what new title was chosen?) What would this fantastic idea, the one that has "never before" been treated be? Pale Fire? In this case, why the original title relating it to a Person from Porlock, unless we think of Gradus or Kinbote?
I'm sorry if this subject has already been discussed before, but I was unable to find other links to it. Dmitri, in a way, would have linked both novels, this is an interesting conjecture: Laura and Porlock, Wild and Kinotean/Gradus?

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