K♣ K♣ K♣ K♣ K♣ K♣ K♣ K♣
While it’s almost cliché to talk about the “iceberg theory” when talking about Ernest Hemingway, in his short story “After the Storm”, much of it literally is set under water.
The narrator inadvertently sails over a recently sunken ocean liner in the Florida Keys and takes a couple of dives to check her out. He looks into a sunken port hole and sees the dead eyes of a woman staring back at him with her long hair floating around her – one of the more eerie images in the story.
In true Hemingway fashion, the unsavory narrator’s interest lies only in whether he can find money somewhere in or around the ship. After several tries, he fails to break in.
Failure – something else in true Hemingway fashion:
They never found any bodies. Not a one. Nobody floating. They float a long way with life belts, too. They must have took it inside. Well, the Greeks got it all. Everything. They must have come fast all right. They picked her clean. First there was the birds, then me, then the Greeks, and even the birds got more out of her than I did.
How wonderful – and how depressing.
This story is included in my copy of The Complete Short Stories of Ernest Hemingway. I read it when I selected the King of Clubs for Week 10 of my Deal Me In 2018 short story project. My Deal Me In list can be found here. Deal Me In is hosted by Jay at Bibliophilopolis.