Wednesday, August 12, 2009

New Title

The book has a new title....

Butterfly in the Typewriter: The Brilliant and Tragic Life of John Kennedy Toole

This title alludes to the last stanza from an unpublished poem by Toole titled "The Arbiter." With permission, I will include this final stanza on one of the first pages of the book:

The book sold well, we understand,
Although the cover itself would command
A buyer’s attention: A large abstract bee
Crushing a butterfly with a typewriter key.

"The Arbiter"
John Kennedy Toole

The original manuscript of the poem is in the Toole Papers in the .Special Collections at Howard-Tilton Memorial Library, Tulane University


  1. Thanks, this title is beautiful. I posted a photo of a living butterfly to wish you continued inspiration! sp, n.o.

  2. That is a lapel grabber of a title! It is poetic AND dramatic.