The Sadness of Sex

The Sadness of Sex

Before you decide I’ve come up with a marvelously provocative title, I will tell you Barry Yourgrau deserves the credit.  The first time I came across his work, I recalled it had been recommended to me in particular. So I put it down and resolved to purchase it later, to savor slowly.

Now, like any bookworm I admit that I am driven to chomp through books rather than nibbling daintily.  The stories are generally about three pages, and never usually more than ten. Barry Yourgrau is an author one wants to savor and but one can’t stop reading.  His prose is like candy. I know I’m supposed to stop, but it’s just too good.  Hence I am buying another Yourgrau book.

Why, you say?  Is it really that good?  And what about this title?

One of my favorite stories has nothing whatsoever to do with sex.  Most of them don’t – not directly, at least. Moon is buried deep within the strange, shifting jungle of naked people, violence, wistfulness, heartache, and well, sadness.  Moon depicts the narrator watching youths attack the moon; they put it in bondage, and consume part of its glowing flesh.  It is a strange and lovely surrealist page.

The brief glimpses the reader has into the psyche of the narrator are more valuable collected together than they are dispersed separately, or developed into longer stories.  What Yourgrau does is developing a story without a story, utilizing the framework of a book of short stories as his major literary device.

And so I voyage into the next Yourgrau book, wondering if Wearing Dad’s Head is equally insightful, personal, and disconcertingly tasty.

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