Hit by a car in Atlanta, ending her life, author of Gone With The Wind died young. Her apartment remains intact downtown, a memorial to her life of letters. I only managed to steal these photographs, and I wonder how strange it is to stare into a person’s cookbook and kitchen. How strange to see things left, supposedly as they were in life. If she was a writer like I am a writer, her kitchen would have a pile of dishes only tackled a couple times a week. Food would be piled everywhere, waiting to be eaten. When I am working, and I am generally always working, I do not want to play games with ingredients.
I can’t imagine her putting her novel down, preparing an elegant dish requiring “Arrowroot Sauce” for her husband, then cleaning the kitchen top to bottom, and scrubbing the pots and mopping the floor.
This is not Margaret Mitchell’s house. This is just a dream of what a famous author’s life should be. Like all the silly kitsch of the fifties–the perfect dad with his perfect pipe and ascot, leaving everything to Beaver–the past must have been more real than this. Her busted ankle aching like devil’s fire in the sweltering summer heat, and she was typing away on the heavy metal keys. Need the windows open when it’s so hot, but the breeze could ruin everything–unsort 800 pages of life and death. And hot, hotter than any of us can imagine for days unending when all anyone had were little electric fans, cool drinks, and patience against the summer, and her ankle broken in a big, heavy cast making things worse, itching like crazy. The madness of the south, and the heat: that’s Scarlett O’Hara’s voice, Rhett Butler’s calm facade against the madness and the heat. Keep the windows closed against the disorderly work of wind upon the pages, and let it all be gone, gone, and gone.