Says Benson, “There was another Bond short story I wrote in-between Never Dream of Dying and The Man With The Red Tattoo. It wasn’t very good. I did it on spec, just for something to do during the off months between the outline and research trip for Tattoo. It was called "The Heart of Erzulie," and it took place in Jamaica. IFP thought it was too much of a Fleming pastiche. I guess I agree. Oh well, it kept me busy for a month.”
According to the website Encyclopedia Mythica, “Erzulie is the Voodoo love goddess and goddess of elemental forces, as well as of beauty, dancing, flowers, jewels, and pretty clothes. She lives in fabulous luxury and appears powdered and perfumed. She is as lavish with her love as with her gifts. On her fingers she wears three wedding rings, her three husbands being Damballa, the serpent god, Agwe, god of the sea and Ogoun the warrior hero. As Erzulie Ge-Rouge, she huddles together with her knees drawn up and her fists clenched, tears streaming from her eyes as she laments the shortness of life and the limitation of love. She is personified as a water snake. She is also called Ezili.”
“You’re correct,” says Benson. “The story had a voodoo theme to it. Believe me, it shouldn’t see the light of day!”
Benson also revealed that he’s written a book chronicling of his adventures in the world of 007. “Last fall I wrote my Bond memoirs, a small autobiography so to speak, that relates my lifelong experiences with 007. It’s called James Bond and Me–A Memoir for lack of a better title. I don’t know what I’ll do with it. I can’t imagine anyone really being that interested. It would probably have to be one of those limited edition books that private presses have done, like Richard Kiel’s book, or Syd Cain’s book. Maybe I can get a thousand copies printed and sold. I haven’t decided.”
Here’s hoping someday one, or both, of these unpublished Benson works will become available for Bond fans to read.
This article first appeared on CommanderBond.net.
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