I didn’t get much reading done this week, I’m fighting off a cold so I fell asleep rather early most nights. I did finish a great anthropology book, reviewed here and The First Four Book of Poems by Louise Gluck. I had never read much of her poetry before and really enjoyed it. I check my local used books stores for poetry and often find treasures that way.
Petterson’s Out Stealing Horses was one of my favorite books of 2007. In it the main character looks back on his life, his friendship with a neighbor and his mysterious father. Petterson’s language and the excellent translation by Anne Born makes mundane events seem magical. His words evoke the world and the inner life of his characters that touches something in me. I find it very direct and truthful. I think To Siberia may also make my best of list.
From To Siberia: I walk forward and put the books on the floor beside the mattress and he does not wake up, just breathes evenly so I can feel it on my face. I stay there standing over him, a long time perhaps, and cannot make myself straighten up. My back will not obey, it hurts from my neck down and heat spreads in my hips, and then I start to cry. I cry as quietly as I can, for I am afraid he will get tears on his face, afraid he will wake up and see me looking at him and my chest hurts when I cry and hold it in at the same time. . .I fill my head with thoughts till it feels purple and hot like the glowing iron at the blacksmith’s forge while I stand over my naked brother weeping because he is beautiful as pictures I have seen in books of men from other times, grown men, and if I could remember why I came out to find him it would not mean anything now. He is not the same anymore, cannot be and his arm around my shoulder will never be the same again.
Have a wonderful week.