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Wednesday, March 24, 2010


[This is one of a series of entries on Milorad Pavic's writings, click for the first post in the series.]

These are lists of quotations from the book that are quite beautiful, I think. I am quoting them in order to share my enthusiasm and to hope the magic rubs off, a little.

Note: At some point I will need to discuss Pavic's use of nonsequitars in paragraphs and even, occasionally, in sentences. His paragraphs are often difficult to digest because they drift through a series of topics, often without transitions, rather than developing one or two carefully defined ones. At times, even his sentences shift topic half way through. I don't yet know what to make of this, but I am noting when it happens and will discuss it later.

Below are some more interesting quotations:

The he yielded and picked one her breasts like a peach. 43

I, who have experience with colors, inks, and letters, recognize each letter by its smell in the damp night, and, lying in my corner, I read by the smells entire pages of the sealed and rolled scrolls that lie somewhere in the attic of the castle. 45

Kyr Avram prefers to read in the cold, clothed only in a shirt, subjecting his body to shivers, and the only part of his reading he considers worth remembering and noting in the book is what penetrates the shivering to reach his attention. 45

One night in Gyüla, Father came across an enormous snowman seated on the latrine. He struck him with the lantern, killed him, and went to dinner. 51

It is only an illusion that our thoughts are in our heads...Our heads and we as a whole are in our thoughts. 61

He was creating the first letters of the Slavic alphabet. he started with rounded letters, but the Slavic language was so wild that the ink could not hold it, and so he made a second alphabet of barred letters and caged the unruly language like a bird. 64

for at the bottom of every dream lies God. 68

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