Thomas Pynchon's V. (1963)
Read Professor Irwin Corey's acceptance speech for Pynchon's 1974 National Book Award for Gravity's Rainbow.
Also, have a look at Douglas Kløvedal Lannark's exhaustive documenting of "love" in Gravity's Rainbow.
Henry Adams, three generations before his own, had stared aghast at Power; Callisto found himself now in much the same state over Thermodynamics, the inner life of that power, realizing like his predecessor that the Virgin and the dynamo stand as much for love as for power; that the two are indeed identical; and that love therefore not only makes the world go round but also makes the boccie ball spin, the nebula precess. (pp.84-85)
From Ash Wednesday (1930) by T.S. Eliot:
Because I do not hope to turn again
Because I do not hope
Because I do not hope to turn
Desiring this man's gift and that man's scope
I no longer strive to strive towards such things
(Why should the aged eagle stretch its wings?)
Why should I mourn
The vanished power of the usual reign?
Because I do not hope to know
The infirm glory of the positive hour
Because I do not think
Because I know I shall not know
The one veritable transitory power
Because I cannot drink
There, where trees flower, and springs flow, for there is nothing again
Wideawake God and His Five Crucified Acolytes
"So it came about that God wore a wideawake hat and fought skirmishes with an aboriginal Satan out at the antipodes of the firmament, in the name and for the safekeeping of any Victoria." (p.73)
From Henry Adams' "Les Miracles de Notre Dame" in Mont Saint Michel and Chartres:
"[the Virgin] was above the law; she took feminine pleasure in turning Hell into an ornament" (p.596)
"Appearing to be a good Catholic, appearing to be carrying on an affair with Maijstral; nothing suspicious in either. But both at once and with (he imagined) scores of father-confessors in Valletta alone for her to choose from;" (p.480)
"I am past forty and I am in love" was reportedly Duse's response when told about D'Annunzio's novel, Il Fuoco, in which she is portrayed unflatteringly.
"A courageous scientific imagination was needed to realize that not the behavior of bodies, but the behavior of something between them, that is, the field, may be essential for ordering and understanding events." - Albert Einstein
From The Secret Integration:
Somewhere en route they picked up a fat basset hound named Pierre, who on sunny days slept in the middle of the state highway that briefly became Chickadee Street as it passed through Mingeborough. (pp.159-60)
From The Secret Integration:
Mr. McAfee was a bass player, but without his instrument. He'd been over in Lenox at some music festival. (p.170)
... I now begin
To teach you about images, so- called
A subject of most relevant importance.
These images are like a skin, a film,
Peeled from the body's surface, and they fly
This way and that across the air; they cause
A terror in our minds, whether we wake
Or in our sleep see fearful presences.
The replicas of those who have left the light
Haunt us and startle us horribly in dreams.
Let me repeat: these images of things,
These almost airy substances, are drawn
From surfaces; you might call them film, or bark,
Something like skin, that keeps the lock, the shape
Of what it held before its wandering.
De Rerum Natura, Lucretius (c.99-55 BC)
His had always been a vigorous, Italian sort of pessimism: like Machiavelli, he allowed the forces of virtù and fortuna to be about 50/50; but the equations now introduced a random factor which pushed the odds to some unutterable and indeterminate ratio which he found himself afraid to calculate. (pp.87-88)
Marco "Marchino" Pampaluna, of Milan, Italy, was kind enough to provide the following:
"Minghe" stands for "minchia" (a very common expression, like the American "shit" -- and quite vulgar). "Minghe" is how "minchia" is spelled (pronounced) by southern Italians. "Minchia" means "dick", so "minghe morte" means "your dick is dead" (i.e, "impotent"), and "capo di minghe" means "dickhead", "dick-headed" &c. "Minghe" by itself would be like saying "shit" or any sort of profane exclamation."
"Minghe morte," said Duke. "I figured we were playing it a little slow," Krinkles said.
Also, Mingeborough is where the kids in The Secret Integration live.
"'Capo di minghe!' The Gaucho sat back, shaking his head." (V. , p.164)
"There was a two-handed, bilingual morra game on over by the icebox. Saul had filled several paper bags with water and was sitting on the fire escape, dropping them on passersby in the street. A fat government girl in a Bennington sweatshirt, recently engaged to an ensign attached to the Forrestal, came charging into the kitchen, head lowered, and butted Slab in the stomach. Figuring this was as good an excuse for a fight as any, Slab's buddies piled in. The morra players were nose-to-nose, screaming trois, sette at the top of their lungs." (p.96)
The Maltese town of Paola is near the farthest inland point of the Grand Harbour.
"Italians have indeed been attempting [Malta's] defloration since the 8th of June." 318; "His youth, Maratt's, Dnubietna's, the youth of a "generation" [...] had vanished abruptly with the first bomb of 8 June 1940." 324. [This date is incorrect. The bombings began on June 11, 1940.]
"[T]he front door flew open and the place was invaded by five enlisted personnel of the U.S. Navy, all in varying stages of abomination. 'This is the place,' shouted a fat, pimply seaman apprentice who had lost his white hat. 'This here is the hoorhouse that chief was telling us about.' A stringy-looking 3rd class boatswain's mate pushed him aside and cased the living room. 'Your're right, Slab,' he said. (p.92) [...]
"'No,' Meatball was still saying, 'no, I'm afraid not. This is not a house of ill repute. I'm sorry, really I am.' Slab was adamant. 'But the chief said,' he kept repeating. The seaman offered to swap the moonshine for a good piece." (p.94)
"Any official doctrine would limit the essential mystery of God. The Rabbis pointed out that he was utterly incomprehensible. Not even Moses had been able to penetrate the mystery of God: after lengthy research, King David had admitted that it was futile to try to understand him, because he was too much for the human mind. Jews were even forbidden to pronounce his name, a powerful reminder that any attempt to express him was bound to be inadequate: the divine name was written YHWH and not pronounced in any reading of the scripture." A History of God, p.74
Why was Porpentine murdered?
It is clearer in "Under The Rose" (Slow Learner) why Porpentine is murdered "under the duello". He had violated "a tradition in espionage where everything was tacitly on a gentlemanly basis" (p.102):
"'You screamed at the Chief,' Bongo-Shaftsbury announced. 'You said: Go away and die.'" (p.136)
"STEN: You'll ask next if he believes her to be his mother. The question is ridiculous." (p.54)