Lipton’s Journal/December 29, 1954/79
|“||And I realized that she was in the hell of knowing as so few people could know exactly what she looked like at every instant, it was cut into her memory by the hundred movies in which she had studied herself, and so she was forced with what pain I could understand only at this moment to see herself always in life as an image on a screen, and understanding this I could have wept for her since I could know that there was nothing for her to do but to criticize, and she was always forced to stare down upon her pleasures from a cold and lonely peak, and that even as she played at being silk and superficial, so she was also a soul in torment, and I had quit her, I had failed her, I had reminded her once again that no man nor any woman could ever satisfy her pleasures. She over-looked them, and stared down, searching for perfection, even as I would always wander and try to discover perfection. That was what we had shared or tried to share; we had looked for perfection together, it was what had kept us lovers so long.
- Lulu Meyers, a Hollywood actress in The Deer Park who was once married to Charles Eitel, aspires to be the most popular actress in America and has an affair with Sergius O’Shaugnessey through most of the novel.
- The long paragraph following these words describing how Lulu’s life had become nothing but a series of screen images was intended by Mailer to be used in the final draft of The Deer Park, and echoes of it can be seen in chapter 17. Mailer discusses the impoverishment of the lives of movie stars again in his biography, Marilyn (1973).
- The indicates Mailer’s handwritten additions to the entry, and
the crossed-out textare his deletions.