04 October 2010

Letting Go.

The shelves are constantly overflowing. I almost never get rid of books, although I probably should more often. When I do, however, I usually leave them behind at Stadsmissionen Hornsgatan - they're quite good at displaying, especially their paperbacks. Seems to be such a sweet place for the small ones to hang out with some like minded before being transferred to their new homes. 

There's been one pile lying around, though, that I haven't had the heart to bring with me: hardcover editions of a few of my favourite novels. Took them to the flea market yesterday and after having just two old men even looking their way, I decided to give them away for free while packing up the car. Was pleased to see two teenage girls grab a few (Burroughs? Shakespeare?), and then a lady in her fifties reading the back cover of Jeanette Winterson's Gut Symmetries with a curious expression. I told her to please read it as it's really dear to me, and then pointed to an old Sun Axelsson I once loved and that I imagined she might like. She seemed truly happy and said she never would have chosen those if I hadn't talked so warmly about them. 

Open recycling will be my next big thing.

02 September 2010

The End.

The other day Anders Nilsen announced that the last issue of Big Questions will be out this fall. A mere fact that makes me want to cry. But supposedly one can expect a forthcoming collection of all 15 issues from Drawn & Quarterly in the future? After all, the first two BQ's are since long out of print. And I need - 

Endings, beginnings; since spring I've mostly been boxing, swimming and reading academic papers. It shows, I know. This fall will, however, be all about Literature, with a focus on gender perspectives. 

12 July 2010

Sitt ansiktes avtryck, eller stenens begär by Agneta Enckell

det fanns något jag vägrade, som jag har glömt.
var jag ska gå, den höga tonens brytningspunkt mot tystnad, glas, blickens avtryck.
vi drömmer kanske inte, har just vaknat.
kanske inte tänkta, avslöjade.                          den maktlösheten

17 June 2010

Versboken by Britt G. Hallqvist (1969)

Disaster Supplies: June

Och tid förgår och tid sträcks ut, och tid
är som ett återfall i en lång sjukdom.

/ Rainer Maria Rilke, Rekviem

14 June 2010

Big Questions #14 by Anders Nilsen: Title and Deed

The Idiot. The tears. The drama. 

Next issue will be the last. How will I ever-

03 May 2010

Anticipation: N.B.

Disaster Supplies: May

Vad finns det kvar åt oss som nu behöver
vartenda ord som svarar mot ett gränslöst
i omätbara avstånd utlagt Hades.

Harry Martinson, Aniara (1956)

02 May 2010

Robert Crawford on T.S. Eliot's "Marina"

Just found my favourite lecture at last year's T.S. Eliot International Summer School online: T.S. Eliot's Daughter, held by poet and professor of Scottish literature Robert Crawford. Not only is Marina one of the poems I keep the closest, but Crawford seemed to have a certain (poet's) understanding that really shone through in his lecture, something which I perhaps felt other lectures lacked.

There was a quite special moment afterwards, when Seamus Heaney, to end a rather excited discussion on the meaning of the poem's epigraph Quis hic locus, quae regio, quae mundi plaga? (*) in relation to the rest of the poem's recalling the recognition scene in Shakespeare's Pericles (**), suddenly said that it must be understood as a tuning fork for the rest of the poem, and nothing else. Some of us sighed out of gratitude for that on point remark.

TSE reading Marina.

(*) "What place is this, what kingdom, what shores of the world?" Taken from Seneca the Younger's tragedy Hercules Furens, where these words are uttered by Hercules himself as he recovers from the insanity during which he has murdered his wife and children. 

(**) Pericles, in mourning for his wife and for Marina, the daughter who is for long thought to be dead, has left his kingdom for the sea. To hopefully rouse him from his despair, a young woman is put before him to sing. As she tells him her life story they both realize that they are in fact father and daughter.

19 April 2010

Currently Reading: Oates

The writer contemplates his opposite in the boxer, who is all public display, all risk and, ideally improvisation: he will know his limit in a way that a writer, like all artists, never quite knows his limits - for we who write live in a kaleidoscopic world of ever-shifting assessments and judgments, unable to determine whether it is revelation or supreme self-delusion that fuels our most crucial efforts.
On Boxing (1987)

12 April 2010

Disaster Supplies: April

Go, said the bird, for the leaves were full of children,
Hidden excitedly, containing laughter.
Go, go, go, said the bird: human kind
Cannot bear very much reality.

T.S. Eliot, Burnt Norton