[lit-ideas] Writing while drinking

  • From: "Lawrence Helm" <lawrencehelm@xxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: <lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Tue, 17 Oct 2006 15:10:20 -0700

?It was a pleasant café, warm and clean and friendly, and I hung up my old
waterproof on the coat rack to dry and put my worn and weathered felt hat on
the rack above the bench and ordered a café au lait.  The waiter brought it
and I took out my notebook from the pocket of the coat and a pencil and
started to write.  I was writing about up in Michigan and since it was a
wild, cold, blowing day it was that sort of day in the story.  I had already
seen the end of fall come through boyhood, youth and young manhood, and in
one place you could write about it better than another.  That was called
transplanting yourself, I thought, and it could be as necessary with people
as with other sorts of growing things.  But in the story the boys were
drinking and this made me thirsty and I ordered a rum St. James.  This
tasted wonderful on the cold day and I kept on writing, feeling very well
and feeling the good Martinique rum warm me all through my body and my


?A girl came in the café and sat by herself at a table near the window.  She
was very pretty with a face fresh as a newly minted coin if they minted
coins in smooth flesh with rain-freshened skin, and her hair was black as a
crow?s wing and cut sharply and diagonally across her cheek.


?I looked at her and she disturbed me and made me very excited.  I wished I
could put her in the story, or anywhere, but she had placed herself so she
could watch the street and the entry and I knew she was waiting for someone.
So I went on writing.?



From page 5 of A Moveable Feast by Ernest Hemingway




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