Nabokovilia: Jim Barnes and Julian Barnes

From a poem in Jim Barnes's A Season of Loss
In the house where Nabokov finished Lolita
the foundation begins to settle, walls sinking in 
around a curving staircase, Lolita's legs still

From Julian Barnes' Nothing to Be Frightened Of:
It could, I suppose, be worse. It almost always can -- which is some mild consolation. We might fear the prenatal abyss as well as the post-mortal one. Odd, but not impossible. Nabokov in his autobiography describes a "chronophobiac" who experienced panic on being shown home movies of the world in the months before he was born: the house he would inhabit, his mother-to-be leaning out of a window, an empty pram awaiting its occupant. Most of us would be unalarmed, indeed cheered, by all this; the chronophobiac saw only a world in which he did not exist, an acreage of himlessness. Nor was it any consolation that such an absence was mobilizing itself irresistibly to produce his future presence. Whether this phobia reduced his level of post-mortal anxiety, or on the other hand doubled it, Nabokov does not relate.