Thursday, April 10, 2008

And then one day.

As I walked home after seeing Mike Leigh's Happy-Go-Lucky (followed by an hour's Q&A session with Leigh himself!), I realized: some particular angers and indignations are not worth my time. I saw men painting the ceilings of the vestibules at Boots the Chemist. I heard a North American saying of the Trailer of Life, "That stuff tastes so good." (Have I told you about the Trailer of Life? It is the food truck at the north side of the market square; the Night Life Van is the food truck at the south side.) I saw a punt slipping quietly through the dark water, while I paused at the top of the public bridge to say goodbye to Orion until fall, just in case I don't see him again; he is so low in the sky even at 9 p.m.

Not a single thing I can say about my day is half as important as this robin who was perched and singing just inside the gate into the wooded bit of Clare's fellows' garden this afternoon. Here's what's important, right here, all the things about the world that are summed up in that millimeter of space you can see in that open beak.

Somehow, people have always led me to believe that Charles Dickens's Barnaby Rudge is not a very good novel. Why did I listen? It's terrific, in all senses of the world--by which I mean to say, if you read it, and if you let it get to you, it will start to terrify you, bit by bit.


Blogger Gryphon said...

What an amazing photo! The leaves (needles?) behind the robin look weird and painterly. This is what Nabokov says about American robins in Pale Fire: "How hard I found to fit the name 'robin' to the suburban imposter, the gross fowl, with its untidy dull-red livery and the revolting gusto it showed when consuming long, sad, passive worms!"

Despite spending far too much money at an independent bookstore in Buffalo today, I didn't get "Barnaby Rudge." Maybe I'll go back. But among the novels I did come away with is a 21st c. epistolary vampire novel called "Fangland."

Also, check out Jennifer Steinkamp Her website doesn't work as well as one would like, but she does amazing things with color and motion.

11:18 PM, April 10, 2008  

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