Edmund White, Daniel Kehlmann, Jay McInerney, Lorrie Moore, Jan de Bas, Clark Ashton Smith, Jurgis Kunčinas

De Amerikaanse schrijver en essayist Edmund White werd geboren op 13 januari 1940 in Cincinnati. Zie ook alle tags voor Edmund White op dit blog.

Uit: A Boy's Own Story

“We lived one year in a suburb so new it was still being built in fields of red clay: a neat grid of streets named after songbirds was being dropped like a lattice of dough over a pie. Up and down Robin and Tanager and Bluebird I raced my bike; in a storm I pedaled so fast I hoped to catch up with the wind-driven rain. As I sped into the riddling wet warmth I shook my right hand according to a magical formula of my own. The universe, signaled by its master, groaned, revolved, released a flash of lightning. At last the imagination, like a mold on an orange, was covering the globe of my mind.”

Imprisoned under all our layers of long underwear, thick socks, shirts, vests, jackets, coats and hoods were these tropical bodies; the steam and hot water brought color back into the pallor, found the nacreous hollow in a hip, detected the subtly raised triceps, rinsed a sharp clavicle in a softening flood, swirled dull brown hair into a smooth black cap and pulled evening gloves of light over raw hands and skinny, blue-veined forearms.

I also felt surging within me a fierce need to be independent. Of course I responded to the appeal of divine hydraulics, this system of souls damned or crowned or destroyed or held in suspense, these pulleys and platforms sinking and lifting on the great stage, and I recognized that my view of things seemed by contrast impoverished, lacking in degree and incident. But the charming intricacy of a myth is not sufficient to compel belief. I found no good reason to assume that the ultimate nature of reality happened to resemble the backstage of an opera house.”


Edmund White (Cincinnati, 13 januari 1940)

De Duitse schrijver Daniel Kehlmann werd op 13 januari 1975 in München geboren. Zie ook alle tags voor Daniel Kehlmann op dit blog.

Uit: F

„Jahre später, sie waren längst erwachsen und ein jeder verstrickt in sein eigenes Unglück, wusste keiner von Arthur Friedlands Söhnen mehr, wessen Idee es eigentlich gewesen war, an jenem Nachmittag zum Hypnotiseur zu gehen.
Es war das Jahr 1984, und Arthur hatte keinen Beruf. Er schrieb Romane, die kein Verlag drucken wollte, und Geschichten, die dann und wann in Zeit schriften erschienen. Etwas anderes tat er nicht, aber seine Frau war Augenärztin und verdiente Geld.
Auf der Hinfahrt sprach er mit seinen dreizehn jährigen Söhnen über Nietzsche und Kaugummimarken, sie stritten über einen Zeichentrickfilm, der gerade im Kino lief und von einem Roboter handelte, der auch der Erlöser war, sie stellten Hypothesen darüber auf, warum Yoda so seltsam sprach, und sie fragten sich, ob wohl Superman stärker war als Batman. Schließlich hielten sie vor Reihenhäusern einer Straße in der Vorstadt. Arthur drückte zweimal auf die Hupe, Sekunden später flog eine Haustür auf.
Sein ältester Sohn Martin hatte die letzten beiden 8 Stunden am Fenster gesessen und auf sie gewartet, schwindlig vor Ungeduld und Langeweile. Die Scheibe war von seinem Atem beschlagen, er hatte mit dem Finger Gesichter gezeichnet, ernste, lachende und solche mit aufgerissenen Mäulern. Wieder und wieder hatte er das Glas blank gewischt und zugesehen, wie sein Atem es mit feinem Nebel überzog. Die Wanduhr hatte getickt und getickt, warum dauerte es so lange? Wieder ein Auto, und wieder war es ein anderes, und wieder eines, und noch immer waren es nicht sie.“


Daniel Kehlmann (München, 13 januari 1975)



De Amerikaanse schrijver Jay McInerney werd geboren op 13 januari 1955 in Hartford, Connecticut. Zie ook alle tags voor Jay McInerney op dit blog.

Uit: Bright Lights, Big City

“. . . How did you get here? It was your friend, Tad Allagash, who powered you in here. You started out on the Upper East Side with champagne and unlimited prospects, strictly observing the Allagash rule of perpetual motion: one drink per stop. Tad's mission in life is to have more fun than anyone else in New York City, and this involves a lot of moving around, since there is always the likelihood that where you aren't is more fun than where you are.

At the subway station you wait fifteen minutes on the platform for a train. Finally, a local, enervated by graffiti, shuffles into the station.You get a seat and hoist a copy of the New York Post.

The train shudders and pitches toward Fourteenth Street, stopping twice for breathers in the tunnel. You are reading about Liz Taylor's new boyfriend when a sooty hand taps your shoulder. You do not have to look up to know you are facing a casualty, one of the city's MIAs. You are more than willing to lay some silver on the physically handicapped, but folk with the long-distance eyes give you the heebie-jeebies.
The second time he taps your shoulder you look up. His clothes and hair are fairly neat, as if he had only recently let go of social convention, but his eyes are out-to-lunch and his mouth is working furiously.
"My birthday," he says, "is January thirteenth. I will be twenty-nine years old."
Somehow he makes this sound like a threat to kill you with a blunt object.
"Great," you say, going back to the paper. “


Jay McInerney (Hartford, 13 januari 1955)



De Amerikaanse schrijfster Lorrie Moore werd geboren op 13 januari 1957 in Glens Falls, New York. Zie ook alle tags voor Lorrie Moore op dit blog.

Uit: Like Life

“She was not good on the phone. She needed the face, the pattern of eyes, nose, trembling mouth... People talking were meant to look at a face, the disastrous cupcake of it, the hide-and-seek of the heart dashing across. With a phone, you said words, but you never watched them go in. You saw them off at the airport but never knew whether there was anyone there to greet them when they got off the plane. ”

“The situation was not easy for her, they knew. Once, at the start of last semester, she had skipped into her lecture hall singing "Getting to Know You" - both verses. At the request of the dean the chairman had called her into his office, but did not ask her for an explanation, not really. He asked her how she was and then smiled in an avuncular way. She said, "Fine," and he studied the way she said it, her front teeth catching on the inside of her lower lip. She was almost pretty, but her face showed the strain and ambition of always having been close but not quite.”

“She had to learn not to be afraid of a man, the way, in your childhood, you learned not to be afraid of an earthworm or a bug. Often, when she spoke to men at parties, she rushed things in her mind. As the man politely blathered on, she would fall in love, marry, then find herself in a bitter custody battle with him for the kids and hoping for a reconciliation, so that despite all his betrayals she might no longer despise him, and in the few minutes remaining, learn, perhaps, what his last name was, and what he did for a living, though probably there was already too much history between them.”


Lorrie Moore (Glens Falls, 13 januari 1957)



De Nederlandse historicus en dichter Jan de Bas werd geboren op 13 januari 1964 in Waddinxveen. Zie ook alle tags voor Jan de Bas op dit blog.


Flamingodansers in de zon

Rococoschilders aan het werk,
ballerina’s in het water,
bruidjes op een huwelijksreis.

Een huwelijksdans, een paringsbalts,
zo krullen ze hun nekken om elkaar,
zo slingeren ze hun poten om en om.

Zo innig kunnen vogels wezen,
zo sierlijk hun manier van zijn.
God zette een krul onder hun bestaan.



Het zwijgen van de schepen

Twee schepen in de nacht,
ze weten van elkaars bestaan
en varen zij aan zij.

Zij raken elkaar bijna,
maar zwijgen over God,
de leegte van het zwijgen,

de liefde en hun vracht.
Twee kleine schepen
in de donkerblauwe nacht.


Jan de Bas (Waddinxveen, 13 januari 1964)



De Amerikaanse dichter, schrijver en beeldhouwer Clark Ashton Smith werd geboren in Long Valley (Californië) op 13 januari 1893. Zie ook alle tags voor Clark Ashton Smith op dit blog.


Boys Telling Bawdy Tales

Half-ignorant ribaldries,
Outrageous drolleries
Of infant Rabelais.


Cats in Winter Sunlight

In the slanted ray,
Huddling closely, my three cats
Slept the winter day.


The Dragon-Fly

By the clear green river,
One afternoon in early autumn,
A dragon-fly with crimson wings alit
On the white thigh of my belovèd;
And, ever since it flew,
More fully have I known the loveliness
And the transiency of days;
And love and beauty burn within me
Like the piled leaves of blood and amber
That burn at autumn's ending.


Clark Ashton Smith (13 januari 1893 – 14 augustus 1961)
Op 19-jarige leeftijd



De Litouwse schrijver en vertaler Jurgis Kunčinas werd geboren op 13 januari 1947 in Alytus. Zie ook alle tags voor Jurgis Kunčinas op dit blog.

Uit: Tula (Vertaald door Elizabeth Novickas)

“My senses tremble, my nostrils overstrained by the city, but I no longer have any spare exits, I have no spare feelings, no spare parts in my imperfect little bat body; perhaps that’s why my love is so short–so intoxicating and so simple–a love that can neither lose anything any more, nor overcome anything; so, on the ceiling above your shallow pallet, together with the lilacs, I watch over you, I see you, in your dreary sleep, throw your arm aside, how you uncover the trembling realm of the heart, and then, then, entirely unexpectedly, a bluish cluster of lilac with two green leaves falls on your chest–I wave my little leathery wings, and now the lilac falls like rain–in clusters, tufts, twigs: violet, greenish, hardened into clots of blossoms, soft lilacs, you know, the kind that bloom and wilt in the overgrown garden plots outside the city, where farmsteads used to stand–next to the woods, on foundations that are already crumbling...”


Jurgis Kunčinas (13 januari 1947 – 13 december 2002)



Zie voor nog meer schrijvers van de 13e januari ook mijn blog van 13 januari 2013 deel 2.

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