Portrait of a Marriage
BlurbPortrait of a Marriage: Vita Sackville-West and Harold Nicolson is the 1973 biography of writer and gardener Vita Sackville-West compiled by her son Nigel Nicolson from her journals and letters. This is a book of strong emotions relating to Sackville-West's complicated marriage to writer and politician Harold Nicolson.
The two chapters written by Vita sometimes seem to be a diary and sometimes a self-confession. They are centred in herself and her violent passion for the wild Violet Trefusis, who loves her, gives her intense pleasure, both physical and intellectual, and drives her to hurt intensely and briefly abandon Harold Nicolson, Vita’s bisexual husband, and her two children, Nigel and Ben.
The three chapters written by Nigel Nicolson are also very strong but in a different sense. Reading about the sexual and emotional life secrets of a mother by the hand of her son is strange, uncomfortable and in certain occasions it even seems cruel: ”I did not know Violet. I met her only twice, and by then she had become a galleon, no longer the pinnace of her youth, and I did not recognize in her sails the high wind which had swept my mother away […].
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