What, I wonder, would the world be like without this intermediate world of the imaginative consciousness that we enter when we read? This world that allows cognitive imagination to blossom. Reading this morning the pared down precision of Ágota Kristóf’s prose gives rise to a clear flow of mental images that eludes me in writing that is over-polished, that tries too hard, where the images and ideas clash and strain credibility.
I am rereading her series of novels considered a trilogy because the same characters reappear in each. Kristóf was less definite. The Notebook is bleak, sublimely intense while the subsequent books are lesser, but the part is in this case always equal to the whole. In Kristóf’s The Illiterate she mentions one of her favourite writers, Thomas Bernhard, specifically his novel Yes so, as is my habit, I also began to read that book.
Friedrike Mayröcker I continue to read to prolong the voice, just a few sentences can be sufficient. This weekend also Anne Carson’s solemn The Glass Essay which lead me to search biographies of Emily Brontë, a writer revered, I think, by Maria Gabriela Llansol. A few pages too of Woolf’s The Waves, browsing the text that I wrote in the margins thirteen years ago.
The perplexities of this world of reading, the books that fade completely away, the voices that stay alive, Llansol’s transformations into figures, the profusion of minds. This simultaneous narrative and its possibilities.