Ernest Hemingway vs. Wallace Stevens (David Markson)

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4 thoughts on “Ernest Hemingway vs. Wallace Stevens (David Markson)”

  1. is this a joke? if so, I don’t get it. If not, it comes as no surprise that Hemingway would act like a thug. What would you expect from someone who thought it great fun to kill wild animals. What an over-rated bore with an excess of testosterone and ex-wives.

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  2. Hemingway wrote a blow-by-blow, “So [I] headed out into the rainy past twilight and met Mr. Stevens who was just issuing from the door having just said, I learned later, ‘By God I wish I had that Hemingway here now I’d knock him out with a single punch.’” Hemingway recounted that Stevens indeed took a swing and missed, that then H knocked S down, and claimed that S broke his hand on punching H’s jaw.

    The next night, Hemingway wrote, “Mr. Stevens comes over to make up and we are made up. But on mature reflection I don’t know anybody needed to be hit worse than Mr. S.”

    Stevens was 57 and Hemingway 37 and both were heavy drinkers. Stevens ceased vacationing in Key West after a couple more incidents, usually with Robert Frost (not physical, but public spectacles nonetheless).

    Hemingway’s complete letter describing the fracas: http://www.kwls.org/littoral/ernest_hemingway_knocked_walla/

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks! This is fantastic. I’ve read a bit about his conflicts with Frost — my understanding is that Stevens thought he “owned” Key West. I’d love to read Stevens side of the fight with Hem.

      Liked by 1 person

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