Adonis Diaries

Is a reflected cruelty the one unpardonable sin? The Invitee of a day…

Posted on: June 13, 2020

Is a reflected cruelty the one unpardonable sin? The Invitee of a day

What if this predetermined cruelty was a response to a prolonged reflective cruelty of the other person or a group of people? Wouldn’t that cruelty be considered a self-defence legitimate reaction?

A couple of months ago, I read the short novella for Truman Capote “The Invitee for a day”. It is a wonderful short story and an autobiography of Strekfus Persons ( the true name of Capote) when he lived as a child with distant cousins of 3 unmarried old ladies and the unmarried brother Oncle B in Alabama.

Miss Sook Faulk, a 60 year-old unmarried woman, had the heart of a child and didn’t feel comfortable but with children. Miss Sook, Strekfus and the dog Queenie were inseparable and great friends.

The unnerving fact is that when I stumbled again with this small book, I had the impression that I have never finished it. Wrong. When re-reading it, I realized I had read it all, and I enjoyed it even better the second time around.

This wretched life that Americans lived in down south, in isolation and away from human communities, with humongous ego and pride that they should not need any support system to survive was pretty common. Especially during the financial crash of 1929 and the prohibition period.

I felt that Miss Sook felt deep in her bone the useless cruel pride of Americans. And worst, their predetermined mind to inflict cruelty for a sick unbounded ego of superiority, even when living a wretched life in isolated and desolate corners in their land.

Note: Truman Capote (Strekfus Persons) was born in New Orleans but spent part of his childhood in Alabama with distant relatives. Wrote his first novellas at age 17 and published “The haunted Domaines” at age 24. In 1951 he published “La Harpe d’herbe” and “Breakfast in Tiffany” in 1958. “In Cold Blood” of 1967 made him famous, but he never wrote another book since then. The novella “The Invitee for a day” is an autobiography of his stay with elder distant relatives in Alabama.

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