Osbert Sitwell’s “Picnics and Pavilions” (1944)

Osbert Sitwell’s “Picnics and Pavilions” (1944)

Sitwell considers picnic an ugly word. He starts the essay “Sing High! Sing Low!” without equivocating. Then, he finds picnics excellent opportunities to act as the noble savage in a controlled natural setting, a continuation of the perpetual picnic of Adam and Eve....
Robert Norton’s Memories of Edith Wharton Picnicking

Robert Norton’s Memories of Edith Wharton Picnicking

Robert Norton recalls Edith Wharton “had a passion for picnics, a passion not shared by quite all of her guests, some of whom, unskilled at balancing a loaded plate on their knees, would have secretly preferred a hot square meal served on solid mahogany: but they...
Nikolai Astrup’s  Midsummer Picnics

Nikolai Astrup’s Midsummer Picnics

Astrum’s recurring theme is the picnic bonfires lighted on Midsummer’s Eve, June 23, marking the summer solstice. Though it’s a pagan holdover, Christians celebrate the evening honoring St. John the Baptist’s birthday on June 24.  In deeply...
Dubose Heyward’ Porgy & Bess (1926)

Dubose Heyward’ Porgy & Bess (1926)

It’s a glorious September day when the residents of Catfish Row intend to enjoy a day on Kittwar Island in Charleston harbor. “It was the day set for the grand parade and picnic of “The Sons and Daughters of Repent Ye Saith the Lord,” and, with...
E.M. Forster’s “The Story of a Picnic” (1904)

E.M. Forster’s “The Story of a Picnic” (1904)

“The Story of a Panic” is one of several stories Leonard Wolff complained that were “Pan-ridden.” It was well-known that Pan was code for identifying gay men and women. Woolf’s complaint implies that a Pan story such as “The Story...
Norman Lindsay’s The Picnic Gods  (1907)

Norman Lindsay’s The Picnic Gods  (1907)

A joke is also at Norman Lindsay’s The Picnic Gods  (1907) is a joke. Usually, Lindsay revels in titillation,  naked buxom women, and muscular men. He took as his mission to rid Australia of its prudish sensibilities, and the content of his paintings and etchings...
Agatha Christie’s Come, Tell Me How You Live (1946)

Agatha Christie’s Come, Tell Me How You Live (1946)

Christie’s picnic at Kawkab in Syria was indelible because the dessert was in bloom. During an archeological dig in 1934 (?), Christie and Max Mallowan* packed a lorry named Queen Mary for sightseeing at Kawkab, a hill about 300 meters high. They expected an...
Bernard Fleetwood-Walker’s Amity>/em> (1933c.)

Bernard Fleetwood-Walker’s Amity>/em> (1933c.)

Fleetwood-Walker’s Amity (1933 c.) captures the poise of a young couple picnicking. They do not touch. The young man stares at the young woman, who looks off mused in though. She twirls a daisy, suggesting youth and innocence.  The picnic basket next to her, however,...