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Internal Exile

September 09, 1990

The self-pitying little keen by Marianne Wiggins ("Internal Exile, July 22) was reminiscent of her novel, "John Dollar." In the novel, human beings are (literally) either paralyzed, putrefying, maggot-eating victims or hideously cruel cannibals. Nobody in "Internal Exile" seems to fare much better. To Wiggins hell seems to be other people. Another definition, however, might go like this: Hell is waking up on a glorious Sunday morning, opening the (usually) wonderful Times magazine and being confronted with the kind of breathtaking narcissism and anomie for which Wiggins is becoming famous.

I suggest that The Times run a companion piece by the caring people who afforded Wiggins safety and refuge, describing what it was like to live with this little bundle of cheer. Surely they deserve better than the only description Wiggins gives of them, namely, "the people with whom we have to live now."

LEONORA HOLDER

Long Beach

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