"He instinctively can find the shining greatness of our American culture and does a good job of highlighting it (although he also does have those rare lapses when he writes about hockey, but that is something caused by impurities in the Eastern waters or something)." Erik Keilholtz
Under the patronage of St. Tammany
Mark C. N. Sullivan is an editor at a Massachusetts university. He is married and the father of three children. Email
In 1928, Myles Connolly, Boston College '18, created a Jazz Age hero for young U.S. Catholics. His peculiar literary creation survives, Fr. John Breslin, SJ, writes.
An excerpt from Connolly's Mr. Blue:
We were tramping out in the Newtons, out around the twin reservoirs which they call lakes. Dusk was sifting out of Boston and giving the massed trees--of which there are plenty in Newton--that stealth and secrecy which is their pretense at night. Boston College, with its solid Gothic tower, stood black against the last smoking flame of the November sunset. We were down in the dark. But no one could mind the dark, even of November, with the Gothic that dominated the hill. Blue caught his breath at the magnificent silhouette.
"That gives me courage," he said, with his face up toward the hill crest. "Of late, I have been melancholy with autumn--a sign of adolescence or old age. But I couldn't be melancholy with that above me. Not that I care for the Gothic, but for what it represents. Sunsets may flare, and the blackness of hades eclipse the earth, but that will endure."
"An earthquake could toss it into the lakes," I objected.
"And so could the cataclysm at the end of the world. . . . But where that stands there will always be something, though no stone is left upon a stone."
Blue is a mystic, and mystics while they appear crystal-clear are sometimes difficult to understand. He saw my shrugged shoulders.
"No great battle for a great cause can ever be forgotten. That up there is no mere group of college buildings; that up there is a battlefield, a sanctuary; that up there is a hearth and home for the Lost Cause that is never lost, the citadel of a strength that shall outlast the hill and rock it stands upon. . . . Once heroes built fortresses against the Mongol and the Saracen; now they must build fortresses against the whole world. . .
"I tell you I know what I am talking about. Once they--the believers, the students, the scholars, the soldiers, the saints--could fight heresies and heretics. Today they have to fight a state of mind."