Wait, what? Apparently this is real.
This week we start by reading the commentary for line 130 and end by reading the commentary for line 143.
Line 130: As the New Zealander Brian Boyd remarks, the discussion by Kinbote of the line in the poem "I never bounced a ball or swung a bat," in which the commentator remarks that he also was not good at soccer or cricket, is hilariously inept; an American poet would be referring to PQ's preoccupations, basketball and baseball. Kinbote cannot help making every passage about himself. Contrast with Kinbote's fine discussion of lines 131-132 before he wanders again into his own concerns.
"The death of Oleg at fifteen, in a toboggan accident," the theme of the sudden death of all of Kinbote's close friends and relatives continues. But the trip through the passage that reminds Kinbote of Oleg is a kind of rebirth -- he is "born again" in the new world, and escapes the fate of the Romanovs after the Russian revolution.
I am curious what Oz will make of this section about a long underground passage. Boyd's book about the novel points to the repeated references to the color green, the number 1,888 mentioned twice, and the references to actress Iris Acht -- Acht is "eight" in German.
Line 137: A "lemniscate" is a figure eight curve (more here). See illustration, above, from Wikipedia, of the "Lemniscate of Bernouli." A bicycle's tires, as Shade's poem states, could leave a similar impression upon wet sand, so Kinbote's remark that the phrase "has no real meaning" is another failure by the commentator.
Next week: Commentary for line 149 to commentary for line 181.
Note: Readers are still posting comments to the earlier weeks of the online reading group. See for example, PQ's new comments for the first and second weeks (handy links at top right). The connection between Pale Fire and Blade Runner 2049 (comment to Week Two) was certainly news to me.