Friday, August 12, 2016

Patti Smith, and television crime shows

Noted, with pleasure, when reading writer/singer/songwriter/artist Patti Smith's 2015 memoir, M Train (Knopf):  her periodic references to (and affection for) television crime shows.  Such as:

Yesterday's poets are today's detectives. They spend a life sniffing out the hundredth line, wrapping up a case, and limping exhausted into the sunset.  They entertain and sustain me.  Linden and Holder.  Goren and Eames.  Horatio Caine.  I walk with them, adopt their ways, suffer their failures, and consider their movements long after an episode ends, whether in real time or rerun.   (p. 32)

Clouds move past the sun.  A milky light pervades the skylight and spreads into my room.  I have a vague sense of being summoned.  Something is calling to me, so I stay very still, like Detective Sarah Linden, in the opening credits of The Killing, on the edge of a marsh at twilight. (p. 37)

The warm drone of a Law & Order marathon was exactly what I needed. Detective Lennie Briscoe had obviously fallen off the wagon and was gazing at the bottom of a glass of cheap scotch.  I got up and poured some mescal in a small water glass and sat at the edge of the bed drinking along with him, watching in stupefied silence, a rerun of a rerun... (pp. 163-164)

The book will be released in paperback this month: