Yeah, they say, clay's the title, but what'sreally in the plate? They take to the game,
puicini, proposing nasty things shuffledand placed before her blind palms—soft
and wet, probably brown, given Joyce'scolor choices of the dull and dank.
The story's game is the same: somethingunnamed at the heart, something dark.
Someone says something about a garden,and there's a mom saying throw it out
at once—suggesting repugnant stuff or somethingwrong. "Something the dog did," laughs one.
The class likes that one. It's a do over,second chance, second verse, better
even than a prayer book in dingy hands. [End Page 133]
Ed Madden is Associate Professor of English and Director of the undergraduate program in Women's and Gender Studies at the University of South Carolina in Columbia. He is the author of Tiresian Poetics: Modernism, Sexuality, Voice 1888-2001, a cultural history of the figure of Tiresias as a third-sex figure in modernism, and a book of poetry entitled Signals.