NABOKV-L post 0014541, Sun, 31 Dec 2006 14:48:43 -0500

JF on optics and windows in PF, red admirals' diet,
sense and nonsense
--- Anthony Stadlen <STADLEN@AOL.COM> wrote:

> As the bird approaches the glass does not its shadow move from the
> ground to
> the bricks of the wall beneath the window, if any, and then up the
> of
> the window itself to meet the bird at the point of collision? Do not
> bird,
> image, shadow (and image of shadow?) come together like Shade, Kinbote
> and Gray
> (and? - VN, reader?)? But Shade does not experience himself as the
> rather as its shadow. ???

As long as the window is sunlit, I think your description works,
with the addition that the waxwing's shadow is also visible
on the floor of the room (or the wall if the sun is coming
through at a sideways angle). It may be a good deal more
visible there (probably a little blurred) than on the window
glass, particularly if the sun is low. I like the shadow in
the room with Shade, corresponding to the reflections of the
furniture that seem to be outside, and continuing into a
different realm.

Shade experiences himself as both the dead bird ("smudge of
ashen fluff") and the part that he sees as living on "in
the reflected sky". There's a bit of confusion here between
shadows and reflections. Maybe I could say that as the
waxwing's shadow passed through the window into the room,
its ____ passed through the window into the reflection.

To Jansy: To supplement what Sandy Drescher posted, I think
waxwings are much too small to eat red admirals. I believe
I can remember seeing waxwings hunting flying insects that
were too small to see.

To Jim Twiggs: I can't speak for Matt Roth, but the reason
I responded the way I did to William Monroe's essay and not
to yours was that yours made sense and his frequently didn't,
in my judgement. I still disagree with your conclusion,
though, at least partly.

Jerry Friedman

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