Tod says that Buz’s date expects hair tonic and muscles. So he gives Buz a tip:
“Be the intellectual. Change of pace. She’ll never see it coming. It’ll dazzle her. Tell her you’re an existentialist.”And Tod begins to recite:
“That’s a tip?”
“Well, that’s very stylish. She’ll love it.”
“Well, supposing she asks me what it is?”
“Tell her you don’t talk about; you live it. And give her a little Rimbaud.”
“I know the lightning-opened skies, waterspouts,And that’s as far as he gets. Because it’s time for a fistfight, with angry David Janssen.
Eddies and surfs; I know the night,
And dawn arisen like a colony of doves,
And sometimes I have seen what men have though
I’ve seen the low sun, fearful with mystic signs,
Lighting with far flung violet arms,
Like actors in an ancient tragedy,
The fluted waters shivering far away.
I’ve dreamed green nights of dazzling” —
This moment of poetry comes from the Route 66 episode “One Tiger to a Hill” (September 21, 1962). Tod is reciting from Louise Varèse’s translation of “Le Bateau ivre” [The drunken boat], which appears in the 1961 New Directions paperback A Season in Hell / The Drunken Boat.
The best touch: Tod pronounces Rimbaud as Rimbo (rhymes with limbo).
All Route 66 posts (Pinboard)
[In my house, it is the summer of Route 66.]