Sunday, November 30, 2008

To The Wedding, by John Berger

I love books.
I've loved them since I was small.
They allowed me to wander no matter how young or poor or busy I was...

Last week, I finally had time to visit De Sleght, my favourite second-hand bookshop here in Antwerpen city.

The more time that passes between these visits of mine, the more truly superb books in English I have to choose from. This time I bought a beautiful book called The Rare and the Beautiful by Cressida Connolly, finished as I rode towards Amsterdam last week.

And then I couldn't resist a book titled To the Wedding by John Berger because ... Michael Ondaatje, a much-loved favourite author of mine had written the following on the back of the book:A great, sad, and tender lyric, a novel that is a vortex of community and compassion that somehow overcomes fate and death. Wherever I live in the world, I know I will have this book with me.

It has been a 32 page free-fall into the story so far and I love it.

It opens with this:
Wonderful a fistful of snow in the mouths
of men suffering summer heat
Wonderful the spring winds
for mariners who long to set sail
And more wonderful still the single sheet
over two lovers on a bed.


A quiet day here in the land of low temperatures and grey winter skies, sneezes and sniffles as I sit here tonight. I hope your weekend was a good one and the week ahead is all that you need to be.

3 comments:

V-Grrrl said...

I need a free fall and I need a net.

distracted by shiny objects said...

Thanks for the suggestion of To the Wedding. I'll be looking for it. I love every word that Michael Ondaatje writes and if he likes this book I am checking it out.
Same weather here. Could even see the different levels of grey hanging over us. Busy though at work. Looking forward to sleeping in tomorrow.

Di Mackey said...

Net ... maybe you just have to trust that there's a net if you freefall, or even better, you know how to fly, have a parachute, or you find out there were stairs ;)

You have excellent taste, distracted by shiny objects :) Did you ever read 'Fugitive Pieces' by Anne Micheals? I always recommend her book to people who love Ondaatje.

Sleep well when you do.