Apparently that title is a little wordplay on the battle cry from the Chronicles of Narnia (thanks, MRG). I wouldn’t know because I haven’t read or seen it. But that’s not going to stop me from shamelessly exploiting the dark and sexy secrets of its author.
Clive Staples Lewis, whom you know as C.S. Lewis, and whose friends called him Jack (weird story about that, read his Wiki page), was the beloved Irish author of every British kid’s third favorite fantasy/sci-fi children’s literature series, the Chronicles of Narnia. Now, I’ve never read the Chronicles of Narnia, probably because no one ever forced me to, and I thought reading was stupid until my dad read HP1 aloud to my sister and me, BUT Narnia holds a special place in my heart because after the movie came out (which I also neglected to see) a bunch of people came up to me and told me I looked like the older girl in it. And who doesn’t love being mistaken for a milky-skinned celebrity archer?! Since then I decided I love me some Lions, Bitches, and Closets or whatever.
But now that I know C.S. Lewis was a kinky motherfucker (LITERALLY) (not his mother, that would be gross), I like him even more. But not enough to watch those books.
So, Jack has an idyllic Irish childhood for about a decade. Goes without saying that he’s not Catholic. But then when he’s ten his mom dies of cancer, and his father becomes awkward and distant. Parent-issues, you know. Let’s fast forward a few years: there are some shamrocks, rainbows, gold, leprochans, he probably decides he loves reading, writing, making up stories, normal Irish writer’s childhood (Yeats shit right here) whatever, blah blah, then BAM 1914, War in Europe.
He waits three years before enlisting because he’s at Oxford and, you know, fragile. While he was training in 1917, he bunked with this guy named Edward Courtnay Francis “Paddy” Moore. The two pals made a pact that if either of them were killed in the war that other would take care of the dead guy’s family. Paddy died in 1918 on the front like right before the war ended, and C.S. Lewis kept his promise. He took care of Paddy’s family all right. He took care of them real good. And hard. He took care of Paddy’s mom particularly well. He fucked his mom is what I’m saying.
First, though, Jane Moore (no relation to Demi), TWENTY SIX YEARS HIS SENIOR, (although you’d think they were related based on their taste in the Ashtons of their perspective generations), the widowed mother of Paddy Moore, took care of Jack. But literally, I mean she took care of him. He was injured in April of 1918 by an ill-fired British shell and since his Dad was, like, weird and distant, Mama Moore came to visit him in the hospital where she would probably bring him cookies/handies.
After the war, the 21 year old stud set up house with the forty seven year old fox. In 1930, they eventually moved into The Kilns (the name for Jack’s house, because British people love naming houses). Jack would introduce her as his Mother (gross) to friends and told a buddy of his via a letter (what people used before iPhones) that he considered her one of the most important people in his life. Which I guess is really sweet or whatever. They lived there, “taking care of each other,” until the late 40s when Jane started to get sick from, you know, being really fucking old. She moved into a nursing home and suffered from dementia until her death in 1951. Jack visited her every single day. I mean, whatever, that’s sort of perfect and wonderful I guess. It’s Nicholas Sparks shit, for sure. MRG loves that.
For a while there was some wishy washy inconclusiveness among C.S. Lewis’s biographers regarding whether or not Jack was really truly sleepin’ with Mama Moore. But eventually everyone was kind of like, “Yeah, they were doing it.” George Sayer, who knew Lewis for a really long time, at first said that the relationship was just a loving one that came out of Jack’s need for a mother figure. But then a few chapters later, he was like, “Nevermind.” Actually, what he said was…
I have had to alter my opinion of Lewis’s relationship with Mrs. Moore. In chapter eight of this book I wrote that I was uncertain about whether they were lovers. Now after conversations with Mrs. Moore’s daughter, Maureen, and a consideration of the way in which their bedrooms were arranged at The Kilns, I am quite certain that they were.
Doesn’t that make it seem like they had some secret passageway between their rooms or something??? I LIKE IT.
After Jack’s “mom” (lover) (ew, I’m sorry I said that) died, he married this hot and smart divorcee with a couple of kids. She died pretty young and he ended up raising his step sons on his own. So, you know, he was really mean and ugly.
Now we come to the point in the post where we ASSess WHAT WE’VE LEARNED. First of all: I think I can safely say that CS Lewis was a solid dude. He spent his life taking care of people who needed him, first his mom/girlfriend, then his non-children children. And that’s, like, a really nice thing. Especially when during your downtime you’re busy creating our generation (and other generations’) most cherished fantasy series. After Twilight.