De Italiaanse schrijver, vertaler, en literatuurwetenschapper Antonio Tabucchi werd op 23 september 1943 geboren in Pisa. Zie ook mijn blog van 23 september 2010 en eveneens alle tags voor Antonio Tabucchi op dit blog.
Uit: The Missing Head (Vertaald door Patrick Creagh)
“Manolo the Gypsy opened his eyes, peered at the dim light creeping through the cracks in his hovel, and got to his feet trying not to make a sound. He had no need to dress because he slept fully clothed, and the orange jacket given him the year before by Agostinho da Silva, known as Franz the German, tamer of toothless lions in the Wonder Circus, now served him for both day and night. In the faint glimmer of dawn he groped around for the battered sandals-cum-slippers that were his only footwear. He found them and slid his feet in. He knew every inch of the hut, and could move about in its murk knowing perfectly well where its few wretched sticks of furniture were. He took a confident step towards the door, and in so doing his right foot clashed against an oil-lamp standing on the floor.
Damn the woman! exclaimed Manolo between his teeth. He was of course referring to his wife, who the previous evening had insisted on leaving this lamp beside her bed on the pretext that the blackness of night gave her nightmares and she dreamt of her dead. If she kept the flame burning as low as can be, she said, the ghosts of her dead dared not to haunt her, and so she could sleep in peace.
“And what is El Rey about at this hour of the morning, O afflicted spirit of our Andalusian dead?”
His wife’s voice was muffled and drowsy, as it is with anyone still half asleep. She always spoke to him in geringonça, a hotch-potch of Romany, Portuguese and Andalusian. And she called him El Rey—the King.
King of a heap of shit, Manolo felt the urge to answer, but he said nothing. King of a shitheap. To be sure he had once been El Rey, when the gypsies were honoured, when his people freely roamed the plains of Andalusia, when they made copper trinkets to sell in the villages and dressed in black and wore fine felt hats, and their knives were not weapons to fight for your life with, but peerless treasures fashioned in chased silver.”
Antonio Tabucchi (23 september 1943 – 25 maart 2012)