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A Visit to Priapus and Other Stories

3.36  ·  Rating Details  ·  28 Ratings  ·  4 Reviews
Just as E. M. Forster's novel of gay love, Maurice, remained unpublished throughout his lifetime, Glenway Wescott's long story "A Visit to Priapus" was also destined to be a posthumous work, buried from 1938 until this century in Wescott's massive archive of manuscripts, journals, notebooks, and letters. The autobiographical story is about a literary man, frustrated in lov ...more
Hardcover, 208 pages
Published November 29th 2013 by University of Wisconsin Press (first published January 1st 2013)
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Joe
Dec 26, 2013 Joe rated it really liked it
At the end of each year, it seems, some generous publisher gives us an unexpected gift that enriches our reading lives. Last year The Library of America presented us with The Collected Writings of Joe Brainard, and we learned the meaning of writing in the moment. This year's present is A Visit to Priapus and Other Stories, by Glenway Wescott, from the University of Wisconsin Press. An eclectic collection, Visit to Priapus reminds us again of why we should read Wescott, and raises the question of ...more
Bill
Apr 03, 2015 Bill rated it really liked it
I rarely read short story collection, they remind me too much of record albums; one or two hits, a few B sides, and the rest filler. A Visit to Priapus and Other Stories was a totally delightful find. What a tragedy that most of these stories went unpublished for so long. Even more than the Visit to Priapus story the ones which really spoke to me were Adolescence, The Odor of Rosemary, and The Love of New York. Even though the city has changed much since the 1940s I share Wescott's obvious feeli ...more
David Zachariason
Mar 13, 2016 David Zachariason rated it it was amazing
A most enjoyable collection of the writings of Glenway Wescott, the best is the story from which the book takes its name. Written in 1938 and published posthumously, much like Forster's "Maurice", it is a look at what his themes might have been had the times been different. Don't ignore the other stories, though - Wescott was a marvelous writer, and the selected items reflect that perfectly.
The least satisfying, for me, is the previously unpublished, experimental "Sacre de Printemps".
willowdog
Feb 05, 2016 willowdog rated it liked it
Wescott's writings in this anthology of short stories and autobiographical essays are often eloquent, dense, and elaborate. The wonderfully gay story A Visit to Priapus is very candid and revealing. Unfortunately, only 4 of the works in this volume have very much gay content. This may be because of the years which these were written--although one could read "gay" in a number of the other stories.
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Glenway Wescott grew up in Wisconsin and briefly attended the University of Chicago where he met in 1919 his longtime partner Monroe Wheeler.

In 1925 he and Wheeler moved to France, where they mingled with Gertrude Stein and other American expatriates, notably Ernest Hemingway, who created an unflattering portrait of Wescott in the character of Robert Prentiss in The Sun Also Rises.

Eventually, We
...more
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