Mexico Dreams



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Part creation myth...
Part relentless pursuit...
Part erotic adventure...

Orphé takes place across two continents and along two jungle rivers. It is an Oedipal love story and a story of vengeance, with a deceptively beautiful woman at its center and two men, one old and one young, who attempt to possess her.

   Orphé is my fourth novel. It actually began as a short story, written in Australia in the early 1960s. It never seemed quite right as a short story—it itched at me for years.
    In 1968 I took it with me, on my motorcycle, to Panama. I recall sitting in a Chinese cafe, reading it over a cup of coffee. I jotted down a few ideas, a few more lines. I sold my motorcycle and continued south. I followed the Amazon from Pulcallpa, Peru, to Belem at the Atlantic coast of Brazil. I lived on a raft in Iquitos. I wandered the streets of Manaus and Leticia and many mud-street villages.
    When I returned to California I chanced upon a book about the Greek demigod Orpheus. Everyone knows the story of his descent into Hades, attempting to rescue his wife, Eurydice. But there were other stories about Orpheus: legends of his many descents into Hades, returning with his songs. This, I felt, was the template of all artists: we descend into our own hells, and return with our novels, our paintings, our music. One story in particular interested me, an early version of the Oedipal myth, containing many references to the creation of the world.
    I decided I would use this myth as the backbone of a new novel, and build it around my recent voyages to Central and South America—the rivers in the jungle, the muddy villages....


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Text and photos copyright D.N. Stuefloten.
Contact: don(at)