Thursday 3 March 2016

A cold storm called Jake came out of the north-northwest today, so I was in, by the stove, with two unread books by Krzhizhanovsky and Lispector, who are adjacent in the alphabet and both born in Ukraine, if thirty-three years apart. He moved to Moscow in 1922, age thirty-five; she, age two, had already been moved to Brazil. There is nothing similar about their subsequent lives, probably nothing similar about their Ukraines either, but wheresoever they gathered it up, they wrestle with reality as the only way to be sure it's there. Krzhizhanovsky is more analytical, more parallel universe and absolute reversal, subject to forces he doesn't name, mysterious strangers, gods and philosophers. Lispector is more emotionally brazen, her reality streams out strange and ordinary, overtaking people on trains, in cities, mingling and separating, prone to enormous changes at the last minute.

I read one then the other for the afternoon and gradually the two writers came together, their soul storm and soul seepage as one by evening.

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