Simon Carmiggelt, Rachel Kushner, Thomas Keneally, Dirkje Kuik, Steven Erikson

De Nederlandse schrijver en dichter Simon Carmiggelt werd geboren op 7 oktober 1913 in Den Haag. Zie ook alle tags voor Simon Carmiggelt op dit blog.

Uit: Mooi weer vandaag?

“Het aardige van het ambacht schrijven is, dat je het nóóit leert.
Je kunt leren hoe je onovertrefbaar een haring schoonmaakt of een plank afschaaft.
Maar de schrijver die op een middag, behaaglijk handenwrijvend, zijn werkvertrek verlaat en tegen zijn vrouw zegt: ‘Marie, goed nieuws, ik ben zojuist gereed gekomen met de letterkunde, ik kán het nu’ bestaat niet. En als hij (onverhoopt) wél bestaat, steek ik mijn hand niet in het vuur voor zijn proza.
Nee, schrijven leer je nóóit.
Het is een eeuwig proberen of het vandaag misschien lukt – op hoop van zegen. En dat is er nu juist het heerlijke van. Want veronderstel eens, dat je het, op een bepaalde dag, kón, net als haring schoonmaken en planken afschaven. Dat zou gruwelijk zijn. Want dan ging je een woestenij van dorre verveling tegemoet. Het zou uit zijn met die schone en gruwelijke, gruwelijke schone vorm van gevaarlijk leven, die schrijven nu eenmaal is. Je zou een metier perfekt beheersen en het, met je linkerhand, tot je laatste dag geeuwend moeten volhouden.
Ik mag er niet aan denken.
Nee, de schoonheid van schrijven als ambacht is juist de onmogelijkheid om ‘het’ ooit te bereiken, want juist dát garandeert je die onafzienbare stoet van lichte, grijze en zwarte dagen, die alleen kan worden afgesloten door Vader Dood.
Proberen, meer is het niet.
Proberen of het lukt.
En soms, als je dénkt dat het lukt, een soort geluk voelen dat niets anders je geven kan. En vaak – blijkt later – heb je toen volkomen ten ónrechte gedacht dat het lukte. Dan blijft de mooie vuurpijl die je af schoot, en waarbij je zelf maar vast blij en voorbarig ‘Aaaah’ riep, helemaal nergens te zijn aangekomen.
Maar ook dát is erg goed.
Het houdt de wind eronder.
De eeuwig waaiende wind van de bitter-zoete twijfel.”

 
Simon Carmiggelt (7 oktober 1913 – 30 november 1987)
Cover van een LP met verhalen

 

De Amerikaanse schrijfster Rachel Kushner werd geboren op 7 oktober 1968 in Eugene, Oregon. Zie ook alle tags voor Rachel Kushner op dit blog.

Uit: The Mars Room

“The trouble with San Francisco was that I could never have a future in that city, only a past.
The city to me was the Sunset District, fog-banked, treeless, and bleak, with endless unvaried houses built on sand dunes that stretched forty-eight blocks to the beach, houses that were occupied by middle- and lower-middle-class Chinese Americans and working-class Irish Catholics.
Fly Lie, we’d say, ordering lunch in middle school. Fried rice, which came in a paper carton. Tasted delicious but was never enough, especially if you were stoned. We called them gooks. We didn’t know that meant Vietnamese. The Chinese were our gooks. And the Laotians and Cambodians were FOBs, fresh off the boat. This was the 1980s and just think what these people went through, to arrive in the United States. But we didn’t know and didn’t know to care. They couldn’t speak English and they smelled to us of their alien food.
The Sunset was San Francisco, proudly, and yet an alternate one to what you might know: it was not about rainbow flags or Beat poetry or steep crooked streets but fog and Irish bars and liquor stores all the way to the Great Highway, where a sea of broken glass glittered along the endless parking strip of Ocean Beach. It was us girls in the back of someone’s primered Charger or Challenger riding those short, but long, forty-eight blocks to the beach, one boy shotgun with a stolen fire extinguisher, flocking people on street corners, randoms blasted white.
If you were visiting the city, or if you were a resident from the other, more admired parts of the city and you took a trip out to the beach, you might have seen, beyond the sea wall, our bonfires, which made the girls’ hair smell of smoke. If you were there in early January, you would see bigger bonfires, ones built of discarded Christmas trees, so dry and flammable they exploded on the high pyres. After each explosion you might have heard us cheer. When I say us I mean us WPODs. We loved life more than the future. “White Punks on Dope” is just some song; we didn’t even listen to it. The acronym was something else, not a gang but a grouping. An attitude, a way of dressing, living, being.”

 
Rachel Kushner (Eugene, 7 oktober 1968)

 

De Australische schrijver Thomas Keneally werd geboren op 7 oktober 1935 in Sydney. Zie ook alle tags voor Thomas Keneally op dit blog.

Uit: Schindler’s Ark

“Trying still to find, in the shadow of Himmler, some hint of Oskar’s later enthusiasms, we encounter the Schindlers’ next-door neighbor, a liberal rabbi named Dr. Felix Kantor. Rabbi Kantor was a disciple of Abraham Geiger, the German liberalizer of Judaism who claimed that it was no crime, in fact was praiseworthy, to be a German as well as a Jew. Rabbi Kantor was no rigid village scholar. He dressed in the modern mode and spoke German in the house. He called his place of worship a “temple” and not by that older name, “synagogue.” His temple was attended by Jewish doctors, engineers, and proprietors of textile mills in Zwittau. When they traveled, they told other businessmen, “Our rabbi is Dr. Kantor—he writes articles not only for the Jewish journals in Prague and Brno, but for the dailies as well.”
Rabbi Kantor’s two sons went to the same school as the son of his German neighbor Schindler. Both boys were bright enough eventually, perhaps, to become two of the rare Jewish professors at the German University of Prague. These crew-cut German speaking prodigies raced in knee pants around the summer gardens. Chasing the Schindler children and being chased. And Kantor, watching them flash in and out among the yew hedges, might have thought it was all working as Geiger and Graetz and Lazarus and all those other nineteenth-century German-Jewish liberals had predicted. We lead enlightened lives, we are greeted by German neighbors—Mr. Schindler will even make snide remarks about Czech statesmen in our hearing. We are secular scholars as well as sensible interpreters of the Talmud. We belong both to the twentieth century and to an ancient tribal race. We are neither offensive nor offended against.
Later, in the mid-1930s, the rabbi would revise this happy estimation and make up his mind in the end that his sons could never buy off the National Socialists with a German-language Ph.D.—that there was no outcrop of twentieth-century technology or secular scholarship behind which a Jew could find sanctuary, any more than there could ever be a species of rabbi acceptable to the new German legislators. In 1936 all the Kantors moved to Belgium. The Schindlers never heard of them again.”

 
Thomas Keneally (Sydney, 7 oktober 1935)

 

De Nederlandse schrijfster en beeldend kunstenares Dirkje Kuik werd geboren in Utrecht op 7 oktober 1929. Zie ook alle tags voor Dirkje Kuik op dit blog.


Kromme Rijnlandschap

 

Ode aan de Rijnlaan

1
Dat vond ik wel aardig, hel logeren.
de keuken van mijn tante,
de tante van mijn keuken, wit,
een snit die ik niet kende.
Gestreept was het eigen nest.
Men moet mij goed verstaan
ik had geen hekel, in tuin en veld
een relmuis kan zich best
bedruipen, snuift door de neus.
Het was het geweld van pikkerup de naaimachine,
pikkeraan de leren muts, de motorkap. de winterienen,
geven is de goudsblom, gek.
Onvergetelijk de blikken trom, het vaandel,
de krijgstrompet; liefde doet trombone blazen:
twee figuren aan het hek, twee brilleglazen.
Oom Jan, Wieb, hoe was het.

 
Dirkje Kuik (7 oktober 1929 – 18 maart 2008)

 

De Canadese schrijver, archeoloog, antropoloog Steven Erikson (pseudoniem van Steve Rune Lundin) werd geboren in Toronto op 7 oktober 1959. Zie ook alle tags voor Steven Erikson op dit blog.

Uit:The Crippled God

“Dust lifted, twisting, in her wake. From her shoulders trailed dozens of ghastly chains: bones bent and folded into irregular links, ancient bones in a thousand shades between white and deep brown. Scores of individuals made up each chain, malformed skulls matted with hair, fused spines, long bones, clacking and clattering. They drifted out behind her like a tyrant’s legacy and left a tangled skein of furrows in the withered earth that stretched for leagues.Her pace did not slow, as steady as the sun’s own crawl to the horizon ahead, as inexorable as the darkness overtaking her. She was indifferent to notions of irony, and the bitter taste of irreverent mockery that could so sting the palate. In this there was only necessity, the hungriest of gods. She had known imprisonment. The memories remained fierce, but such recollections were not those of crypt walls and unlit tombs. Darkness, indeed, but also pressure. Terrible, unbearable pressure.Madness was a demon and it lived in a world of helpless need, a thousand desires unanswered, a world without resolution. Madness, yes, she had known that demon. They had bargained with coins of pain, and those coins came from a vault that never emptied. She’d once known such wealth.And still the darkness pursued.
Walking, a thing of hairless pate, skin the hue of bleached papyrus, elongated limbs that moved with uncanny grace. The landscape surrounding her was empty, flat on all sides but ahead, where a worn-down range of colourless hills ran a wavering claw along the horizon.
She had brought her ancestors with her and they rattled a chaotic chorus. She had not left a single one behind. Every tomb of her line now gaped empty, as hollowed out as the skulls she’d plundered from their sarcophagi. Silence ever spoke of absence. Silence was the enemy of life and she would have none of it. No, they talked in mutters and grating scrapes, her perfect ancestors, and they were the voices of her private song, keeping the demon at bay. She was done with bargains.Long ago, she knew, the worlds – pallid islands in the Abyss – crawled with creatures. Their thoughts were blunt and simple, and beyond those thoughts there was nothing but murk, an abyss of ignorance and fear.”

 
Steven Erikson (Toronto, 7 oktober 1959)

 

Zie voor nog meer schjrijvers van de 7e oktober ook mijn vorige blog van vandaag.

 

Georg Hermann, James Whitcomb Riley, Wilhelm Müller, Sohrab Sepehri, Chigozie Obioma

De Duitse schrijver Georg Hermann (oorspronkelijk Georg Hermann Borchardt) werd op 7 oktober 1871 in Berlijn geboren. Zie ook alle tags voor Georg Hermann op dit blog.

Uit:Einen Sommer lang

“Eginhard Meyer hatte durchaus nicht die Absicht, sich einmal später auf dem Brotbaum der Advokatur anzusiedeln. Auch Öler, Bediener, Werkmeister, Ingenieur der großen preußischen Rechtsmaschine zu werden verschmähte er; trotzdem für ihn väterliche Fürsorge schon frühzeitig gewisse Schritte unternommen hatte, daß ihm die Tore dieses Maschinensaals nicht verschlossen blieben. Nein, Eginhard Meyers Streben ging danach, selbst wieder einmal Lehrer nachwachsender Generationen von Rechtsverständigen zu werden, neuen Wein in die alten Schläuche zu füllen und die Zahl der Bücher über die Rechtswissenschaft um einige zu vermehren.
Wenn Nietzsche recht hat, so er sagt: »Je größer der Mann, desto größer seine Verachtung«, so mußte unser Mann, Eginhard Meyer – das heißt, durch Rückschluß festgestellt – sehr groß sein. Denn er hatte eine maßlose Verachtung für alles, was Leute vor ihm in seinem Gebiete geschaffen hatten; eine Verachtung, die nur noch durch die übertroffen wurde, die er für jene hegte, die heute auf dem gleichen Gebiete sich betätigten. Daß er am Rande dieses keineswegs dornenfreien Weges, den er zu betreten beabsichtigte, die ersten fünfundachtzig Jahre seines Lebens kaum große Reichtümer sammeln würde, war allen Beteiligten und auch ihm klar. Er fand sich aber mit dieser Tatsache in dem harten, entsagungsreichen Stolze des Idealisten ab.
Auch seine Braut, Hannchen Lindenberg – man muß das auseinanderhalten! – ein sehr junges Wesen, die von ihrer Mutter einen großen Wortreichtum von Pflichtbezeichnungen und sittlichen Erwägungen erblich überkommen und zeitgemäß ausgebaut hatte, fand gerade hierin einen Anreiz mehr, sich auf das pastorale Jahrzehnt einer gemeinsam durchkämpften Brautzeit vorzubereiten und zu versteifen. Es war eine Märtyrerkrone, die Hannchen Lindenberg sich mit redereicher Wollust auf die wundervollen kastanienbraunen Flechten ihres großäugigen Hauptes stülpte. Hannchen Lindenberg liebte (vielleicht mehr als ihren Bräutigam) solche Märtyrerkronen. Sie hatte das von je getan. Hannchen Lindenberg brauchte sie und suchte sich, wie spätere Jahre zeigten, stets wieder eine neue, wenn die alte schadhaft und unansehnlich geworden war und die Blicke der Umwelt nicht mehr genügend auf sich zog.
Zum Schluß lag aber nach menschlichem Ermessen der Fall keineswegs so verzweifelt und aussichtslos, wie die beiden – Egi Meyer und Hannchen Lindenberg – in langen Spaziergängen selbstzerfleischend sich ausmalten. Denn da die Eltern des jungen Herrn Meyer für recht wohlhabend gehalten wurden – es auch wohl waren –, so war anzunehmen, daß sie im Verein mit Frau Luise Lindenberg ein Machtwort sprechen würden, um eines schönen Tages den entnervenden Stellungskrieg der Brautzeit in die offene Feldschlacht der Ehe zu überführen.”


Georg Hermann (7 oktober 1871 – 19 november 1943)

 

De Amerikaanse dichter en schrijver James Whitcomb Riley werd geboren op 7 oktober 1849 in Greenfield, Indiana. Zie ook alle tags voor James Whitcomb Riley op dit blog.

Plain Sermons

I saw a man–and envied him beside–
Because of this world’s goods he had great store;
But even as I envied him, he died,
And left me envious of him no more.

I saw another man–and envied still–
Because he was content with frugal lot;
But as I envied him, the rich man’s will
Bequeathed him all, and envy I forgot.

Yet still another man I saw, and he
I envied for a calm and tranquil mind
That nothing fretted in the least degree–
Until, alas! I found that he was blind.

What vanity is envy! for I find
I have been rich in dross of thought, and poor
In that I was a fool, and lastly blind
For never having seen myself before!

 

Sister Jones’s Confession

I thought the deacon liked me, yit
I warn’t adzackly shore of it–
Fer, mind ye, time and time agin,
When jiners ‘ud be comin’ in,
I’d seed him shakin’ hands as free
With all the sistern as with me!
But jurin’ last Revival, where
He called on _me_ to lead in prayer,
An’ kneeled there with me, side by side,
A-whisper’n’ ‘he felt sanctified
Jes’ tetchin of my gyarment’s hem,’–
That settled things as fur as them-
Thare other wimmin was concerned!–
And–well!–I know I must a-turned
A dozen colors!–_Flurried_?–_la_!–
No mortal sinner never saw
A gladder widder than the one
A-kneelin’ there and wonderun’
Who’d pray’–So glad, upon my word,
I railly could n’t thank the Lord!

 
James Whitcomb Riley (7 oktober 1849 – 22 juli 1916)
Portret door T. C. Steele, 1891

 

De Duitse, romantische dichter Wilhelm Müller werd geboren op 7 oktober 1794 in Dessau. Zie ook alle tags voor Wilhelm Müller op dit blog.

Am Feierabend

Hätt ich tausend
Arme zu rühren!
Könnt ich brausend
Die Räder führen!
Könnt ich wehen
Durch alle Haine!
Könnt ich drehen
Alle Steine!
Daß die schöne Müllerin
Merkte meinen treuen Sinn!

Ach, wie ist mein Arm so schwach!
Was ich hebe, was ich trage,
Was ich schneide, was ich schlage,
Jeder Knappe tut mir′s nach.
Und da sitz ich in der großen Runde,
In der stillen kühlen Feierstunde,
Und der Meister spricht zu allen:
Euer Werk hat mir gefallen;
Und das liebe Mädchen sagt
Allen eine gute Nacht.

 

Des Finken Abschied

Es saß ein Fink auf grünem Zweig,
Der war so frisch und blätterreich,
Und sang wohl dies und jenes;
Durch Lenz und Sommer und Herbst er sang,
Hätt da gesungen sein Lebelang,
Wär nicht der Winter kommen.

Der Winter kam mit Saus und Braus:
»Ihr Müßiggänger, zum Reich heraus,
Ihr Flattrer und Sänger und Horcher!
Herab vom Baum, du grünes Blatt!
Zum Bauen und zum Brennen hat
Der Herr das Holz erschaffen.«

Da geht im Hain das Schütteln los,
Und flugs steht alles blank und bloß,
Bis auf den Zweig des Finken.
Jetzt, naseweises Vöglein, flieh!
Mit solcher Staatsökonomie
Da ist nicht viel zu spaßen.

Und ′s Vöglein flog und sang: »Ade!«
Da warf der Winter Reif und Schnee
Ihm hintendrein, und trafs nicht.
Der Finke lacht′ aus voller Kehl:
»Bewahre Gott jede Christenseel
Vor diesem Landesvater!«

Und als ich ′mal nach Welschland zog,
Manch Vöglein mit dem Wandrer flog,
Da war auch jenes drunter:
Und wär′s gewest eine Nachtigall,
So hätt mein Lied einen bessern Schall,
Ich hab′s ihm nachgesungen.

 
Wilhelm Müller (7 oktober 1794 – 1 oktober 1827)
Monument in in Dessau

 

De Iraanse dichter en schilder Sohrab Sepehri werd geboren op 7 oktober 1928 in Kashan. Zie ook alle tags voor Sohrab Sepehri op dit blog.

Morning Glory

Past the border of my dream
The shadow of a morning glory
Had darkened all these ruins
What intrepid wind
Transported the morning glory seed to the land of my Nod?

Beyond glass gates of dream
In the bottomless marsh of mirrors
Wherever I had taken a piece of myself
A morning glory had sprouted
Forever pouring into the void of my soul
And in the sound of its blossoming
I was forever dying in myself

The veranda roof caves in
And the morning glory twines about all columns
What intrepid wind
Transports this morning glory seed to the land of my Nod?

The morning glory germinates
Its stem rising out of my transparent sleep
I was in a dream
Flood of wakefulness overflowed.
To the view of my dream ruins I opened eyes:
The morning glory had twined all about my life.
I was flowing in its veins
It rooted in me
It was all of me
What intrepid wind
Transported this morning glory seed to the land of my Nod?

 

Vertaald door Ismail Salami

 
Sohrab Sepehri (7 oktober 1928 – 21 april 1980)

 

Onafhankelijk van geboortedata

De Nigeriaanse schrijver Chigozie Obioma werd geboren in 1986 in Akure. Zie ook alle tags voor Chigozie Obioma op dit blog.

Uit: The Fishermen

“Glimpses of it mostly came like a locomotive train treading tracks of hope, with black coal in its heart and a loud elephantine toot. Sometimes these glimpses came through dreams or flights of fanciful thoughts that whispered in your head—I will be a pilot, or the president of Nigeria, rich man, own helicopters—for the future was what we made of it. It was a blank canvas on which anything could be imagined. But Father’s move to Yola changed the equation of things: time and seasons and the past began to matter, and we started to yearn and crave for it even more than the present and the future. He began to live in Yola from that morning. The green table telephone, which had been used mainly for receiving calls from Mr Bayo, Father’s childhood friend who lived in Canada, became the only way we reached him. Mother waited restlessly for his calls and marked the days he phoned on the calendar in her room. Whenever Father missed a day in the schedule, and Mother had exhausted her patience waiting, usually long into midnight, she would unfasten the knot at the hem of her wrappa, bring out the crumpled paper on which she’d scribbled his phone number, and dial endlessly until he answered. If we were still awake, we’d throng around her to hear Father’s voice, urging her to pressure him to take us with him to the new city. But Father persistently refused. Yola, he reiterated, was a volatile city with a history of frequent large-scale violence especially against people of our tribe—the Igbo. We continued to push him until the bloody sectarian riots of March 1996 erupted. When finally Father got on the phone, he recounted—with the sound of sporadic shooting audible in the background—how he narrowly escaped death when rioters attacked his district and how an entire family was butchered in their house across the street from his. “Little children killed like fowls!” he’d said, placing a weighty emphasis on the phrase “little children” in such a way that no sane person could have dared mention moving to him again, and that was it. Father made it a tradition to visit every other weekend, in his Peugeot 504 saloon, dusty, exhausted from the fifteen-hour drive. We looked forward to those Saturdays when his car honked at the gate, and we rushed to open it, all of us anxious to see what snack or gift he had brought for us this time. Then, as we slowly became accustomed to seeing him every few weeks or so, things changed. His mammoth frame that commandeered decorum and calm, gradually shrunk into the size of a pea. His established routine of composure, obedience, study, and compulsory siesta—long a pattern of our daily existence—gradually lost its grip.”

 
Chigozie Obioma (Akure, 1986)

A Child’s Prayer (Matilda Betham-Edwards)

Bij de 27e zondag door het jaar

 

 
Jezus veroordeelt de schijnheiligheid van de Farizeeërs door Jacob Jordaens, 1660-1670

 

A Child’s Prayer

God make my life a little light,
Within the world to glow,—
A tiny flame that burneth bright,
Wherever I may go.

God make my life a little flower,
That giveth joy to all;—
Content to bloom in native bower
Although its place be small.

God make my life a little song,
That comforteth the sad;
That helpeth others to be strong,
And makes the singer glad.

God make my life a little staff
Whereon the weak may rest,—
That so what health and strength I have
May serve my neighbor best.

God make my life a little hymn
Of tenderness and praise,—
Of faith, that never waxeth dim,
In all His wondrous ways.

 


Matilda Betham-Edwards (4 maart 1836 – 4 januari 1919)
Church of St Mary Magdalene in Westerfield, de geboorteplaats van Matilda Betham-Edwards

 

Zie voor de schrijvers van de 7e oktober ook mijn volgende twee blogs van vandaag.