his life: neitlier alcohol, nor a debilitatingnmarriage, nor the shattering ofnyouthful dreams prevented him fromnwriting at least one novel and a dozennshort stories that guarantee him a securenplace in the pantheon of American lettersn. Although he may not be one of ” thengreatest writers who ever lived,” as ProfessornBruccoli asserts, his achievementnelevates him to the forefront of 20thcenturynAmerican writers. Fitzgeraldnneeds no drumbeaters to keep his namenalive.nSplendid as his work is, Fitzgeraldnlived a sad life, a life without the mooringsnhe so desperately needed. He pursuednZelda Sayre as the embodiment ofnhis romantic dream of perfection. Havingnwon her, he discovered the reality:nZelda would not — perhaps could not—ngive him the happiness and securitynwhich would support him in his quest fornartistic greatness. The marriage draggednboth of them into despair and mutualntorment. Fitzgerald also lacked thatnsingle-minded determination and ironndiscipline that would have enabled himnto moor his life to his art. He wantednliterary immortality, but he also lustednafter glamor, popular acclaim andnmoney. No cold garrets or dank basementsnfor Fitzgerald: between 1920 andn1929 he earned $244,967 from his writings,nbut even that princely sum failed tonslake his thirst for the ease and grace thatnmoney could buy. He constantly bemoanednthe necessity to churn out popularnstories to earn the money that wouldnfree him to write his novels and to livengrandly. Such self-pity evokes little compassionnwhen one considers some of thenother, perhaps more important, writersnwho lived in penury, sacrificing all to thenhigh calling of their art.nA man can wander far only if thenmeaning of his existence is derived fromna sense of place, from the knowledge thatnone belongs to a people who have beennshaped by the play of history upon angiven location. Faulkner, for one, hadnthis; Fitzgerald did not. He felt little kinshipnwith the nouveau-riche Irishmen ofnhis mother’s family. St. Paul, Minnesotaninspired in him no love or sense ofnbelonging. At tirnes he fancied himselfnsomething of a Southern aristocrat by virtuenof his father’s ties with the oldnfamilies of Maryland. Edward Fitzgeraldnfed young Scott with the lore of the LostnCause and schooled his son in the impeccablenmanners of a gentlemen. WhatevernSouthern identification Edward Fitzgeraldnconveyed to his son, it did notnstick: Fitzgerald had no anchor in thengenteel Maryland past. Only deathnwould link him to the soil his ancestorsnhad nurtured: he is buried in a cemeterynin Rockville, Maryland, not far from thensite of “Glenmary,” the farm of hisnfather’s people.nScott Fitzgerald grew up in the RomannCatholic Church, but the Church had littlenlasting effect upon him. The majestynof its ritual appealed to his buddingnromanticism, and an occasional hero ofnthe Faith fired his imagination; implausiblenas it may sound, during his studentndays at Newman School in NewnJersey Fitzgerald actually flined with thenidea of entering the priesthood. Oncenfree of a Catholic environment, however,nhe drifted away from the Church. OnnFebruary 20, 1920, he wrote to a friend:n”You’re still a catholic but Zelda’s thenonly God I have left now.” This god soonnfailed him, leaving only the evanescingnmemories of the first rapturous momentsnof his “conversion”; in the 1930’s henwrote in his Notebooks: “I left myncapacity for hoping on the little roadsnthat led to Zelda’s sanitarium.”n^cott Fitzgerald had nothing to teachnJane Bowles about sadness; althoughntwenty-one years younger than Fitzgerald,nshe had already suffered much bynthe time Fitzgerald entered his lamentnabout lost hopes. The death of her fathernand an operation that left her with a permanentlynstiffened knee had alreadynschooled her in suffering by the earlyn1930’s. Like Fitzgerald, she confided hernthoughts to a notebook, where in then1950’s she wrote: “I have never yet erijoyedna day, but I have never stopped tryingnto arrange for happiness.” UnlikennnFitzgerald, she could not find consolationnby looking back with satisfaction onna body of work guaranteed to last: shenpublished one novel, one play and sixnshort stories, and between 1950 and herndeath in 1973 she wrote scarcely at all.nFitzgerald’s fame has grown since hisndeath; not many people have even heardnof Jane Bowles, much less read her work.nJane Bowles suffered some of the samenpsychic disabilities that plagued Fitzgerald.nNew York City and Long Islandn—the settings for her childhood—gavenher no sense of place. Family she had: hernmother’s many sisters, with the attendantntrain of cousins, enabled her to grownup with strong familial ties, but after hernmarriage to Paul Bowles in 1938 shenlargely severed the cords of kinship. HernJewishness touched her little, eithei as annhistoric identity with a people or as anfaith in Yahweh’s promises to his chosennnation. She could not use her Jewishnessneither as a weapon to ward off herndemons or as an agony that could bentransformed into great art.nScott and Zelda’s marriage followed anfairly conventional route to ruin: twonself-centered, immature young peoplenwho worked out their frustrations on onenanother. Jane’s marriage to the composernand writer Paul Bowles took a more bizarrenturn. Even before her marriage tonPaul, Jane had opted for lesbianism, ancompulsion that drove her to one-nightnstands and sordid affairs. Paul Bowlesnwas not able to give Jane the security of anstable union; he believed in freedom innmarriage, and his artistic sensibility lednhim into a preoccupation with the perversenand the degraded. Paul did notncause Jane’s problems—perhaps did notneven exacerbate them—but if one couldnhave selected an ideal mate for Jane, itnsurely would not have been a man ofnwhom Norman Mailer wrote: “PaulnBowles opened the world of Hip. He letnin the murder, the drugs, the incest, thendeath of the Square … the call of thenorgy, the end of civilization.” Jane andnPaul remained married until her death,nbut Jane never found in their unionn—she may not have wanted to find—thenMay/June 1982n