Monday, August 4, 2014

All That

Good-Bye to All That.

By Robert Graves.  A memoir of a British officer serving in a Welsh regiment.  Remarkably funny in spots.  In that British way.  Graves was an odd duck in public school, with the usual buggery there, and joined right up when the Great War started.  Even before the Pals Brigades were started up.  He survives all those years of the war, but in the end his nerves are pretty shot, and take every decent opportunity to get away from the fighting.

But he doesn't cry about it.  And he certainly did his part.  But they knew or learned even then that there is only so much you can be exposed to before cracking.  And that idea has been a constant refrain, in the forefront, ever since.

Oh, and the title?  It's not about the war.  It's a reference to his divorce 10 years AFTER.  Sheesh.  I felt cheated.  AND ROSEBUD WAS HIS SLED.

1 comment:

Bob said...

Graves makes a guest appearance in Pat Barker's fine novel of WWI, Regeneration. An equally fine movie was made from the book, called Regeneration in UK and Behind the Lines in the US. It features Jonathan Pryce in probably his best performance ever as an Army psychologist dealing with shell-shock (the WWI term for PTSD). Both the book and movie I highly recommend.