I USED TO BELIEVE I HAD FOREVER, NOW I'M NOT SO SURE by William Saroyan

I USED TO BELIEVE I HAD FOREVER, NOW I'M NOT SO SURE

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Wily Bill Saroyan has cleaned out the attic, tossing up some true-blues from the Forties, some laments from the Fifties, some second thoughts of the Sixties--sketches, rambles, poems, meditations, some marvelously good, some wondrously dull. The initial piece, A Seaside Friendship (1956) is a two-page stunner about a dog, a rock, the sea, a friendship; there are dialogues of two-pronged souls; memories from Amnesiaville, laments and curses. ""Nobody, but nobody,"" he wrote in 1966, ""is going to tell me I'm not the most."" Who are all those others? ""I'm the nicest. I love everybody."" And Everything--pebbles on the beach like a crowd of people; walking in New York; some great writer boys from Bill Blake through Twain and London and Gorki, who died before Saroyan could meet him; two eccentrics like Joe Frisco and Joe Gould; hymns and anybody's loud crazy sermons; Good Old Goody Godot; etc. after grand etceteras. As his recent piece on the hippie generation shows, Bill Saroyan has not yet, in spite of his appreciation of his own ""expert deteriorating,"" choked off the floodgates. Even in the bulk of landfill here, the pebbles manage to look like people. For those whose unreasonable love affair with Saroyan has weathered many a rambling wreck, this will not cool the fires; for those--are there any?--not in the know, better start with his earlier works. Saroyan serendipity.

Pub Date: Sept. 16th, 1968
Publisher: Cowles