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Wednesday, May 4, 2011

KIM IX -- chapter 5.1: Nine Hundred Pukka Devils

courtesy: dontaylorbookbinder.blogspot.com
Stop reading at: "'Powers of Darkness!' was all that Father Victor could say, as Bennett marched off, with a firm hand on Kim's shoulder."
  1. The psychology of prophesies (and I can't help but mentally separate from the red bull those which I believe to be "true" prophesies, on the/my religious front, though these must by necessity be just as subject to this question as any other, as Christianity is as much a mythology as any other religion) interests me, inasmuch as the fulfillment of Kim's father's prophesy is subject upon Kim's interpretation of both the prophesy and the circumstances around him.  We've already seen one instance when perhaps the prophesy had potential to be fulfilled (the red-faced "bullish" horse trader), but as of now Kim has disregarded it.  What would have happened had he believed it the fulfillment of his prophesy back at that point?  Rather, now, the red bull on the green flag, which also happens to be the flag of his father's Irish regiment (the deus is it!), appears, and Kim believes it to be the fulfillment--or, at least, a signpost toward (and, admittedly, this is a much stronger potential fulfillment than the old horse trader!) --the prophecy.  Thoughts?
  2. The Royal Loyal Mavericks
  3. The Lama: "I have considered the countenance of that priest, and I think he is learned."  Is this possible?
  4. Kipling doesn't spend (waste?) any time describing the internal emotional machinations of his characters, and in this case we see little physical evidence of how the discovery makes him feel, beyond Kim's muttering "It certainly was a Red Bull—my Red Bull".  Is there turmoil?
  5. An obscure, nearly-impossible, yet potentially humorous cross-textual comparison: Kimball O'Hara, Jr. and the Lama :: Samwise Gamgee and Frodo Baggins.
  6. Coincidence???  (the regiment is his father's who and their symbol is his)  --  Regardless, I finally feel a connection to the story (and yes, I'm still so callow a reader that, while not requiring one, a connection is yet highly desirable and influential).


  1. 1. It's an interesting point that you make about prophecies. One of the things that I like about the prophecies in the Old Testament is that they've been interpreted to mean different things in Israeli history and then, obviously as Christians, also as being about the Christ. I think that, relating back to the book, this one is more fitting because it has the element of war ("My star is war.").
    3. No, it's not, but physiognomy was popular back then.
    4. Well, we really don't know, do we? Kind of unfortunate, in my opinion.
    5. Funny because I didn't see this when I made my Smeagol/Gollum to Kim comparison yesterday.

  2. 4. This book is testing me.
    5. I thought about this when you made the comment. Haha!


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