Saturday, February 20, 2010
Thursday, February 11, 2010
3:23 a.m. For sleepless hours the title line from Richard Thompson's "From Galway to Graceland" has been flickering in my mind, catching like a torn toenail on the loose fabric of family worries and job worries and restless turning and a recurring need to pee. I pull out Zarko's description of his trip from Germany through Zagreb to Pristina on the occasion of Slobodan Milosevic's catastrophic speech at the field of blackbirds, Kosovo polje, read his careful cadences, follow his restless mind, enter his world just as he finds an old friend:
. . . we walked listlessly down Amruš street, whose meandering course took us unfailingly to the house number thirteen.
At Julije Knifer’s, the atmosphere was “cozy.” The dog gnawed at one of my shoes. Nada was coating eggplants with bread crumbs. Ana was unaffected and sweet. Knifer, as always in similar situations, held his joined hands at the nape of his neck. Those were moments of pure feeling, of clear looks and inner peace. Even the voice of Slobodan Miloševic on television was slightly more restrained.
Zarko once took me to visit Knifer in his apartment in Paris. Paintings of meanders everywhere. And in the night I ease my mind into slow meanders, let the ticking clock move me along the currents of black paint on white, of simple form.
Sunday, February 7, 2010
In spending the morning folding shirts, rolling up socks, cutting my nails, bathing and showering, sipping tea from time to time on the balcony, I succeeded for the first time in conceiving of such activity as a possible way of life (for a while)
Must admit that reading Handke’s is interfering with my getting back to blogging. It feels now that the blog should be something like this, but on the other hand, what an impossible act of solipsism that would be.
My friend Michael Roloff pointed out this blog, being written by a professor of literature in London. He has discovered, or is rediscovering, Peter Handke's aphoristic works, including "The Weight of the World." The first quote above is from Handke, the second from the blogger.
The blogger relates such passages to Joyce's epiphanies, which makes good sense to me.
And finally, the whole set of thoughts leads to questions about a writer's notebook and his or her writing. Teaching a class called WANDERLUST, thinking about travelers who write, I find my mind swinging back and forth between notebook and text, between note and sentence, between observation and explanation.
[HERE a link to the blog]