from “Becoming” by Andrej Blatnik in his story collection You Don’t Understand: “When I become a father, thinks the boy, I’ll make sure I stay a boy. Because a child needs a father who knows how to be a child. When I become a father, thinks the boy, it will be different. That is: I’ll beContinue reading “Becoming”

Stretching the Cord

“They both knew that, as they say, the end was already written, the end of them, of the sad young people who read novels together, who wake up with books lost between the blankets, who smoke a lot of marijuana and listen to songs that are not the same ones they separately prefer (of EllaContinue reading “Stretching the Cord”

Once as Good as Always

Once that moment had passed, a more objective gaze revealed that the sticky object in his hand was formless and repulsive. He was through for the day. He tossed the fish into the washbowl full of water, and, for want of a rag, dried his hands on the sheet of notepaper, which he then foldedContinue reading “Once as Good as Always”

Imminent Equilibrium

“Most of all I enjoy central-heating control rooms, where men with higher education, chained to their jobs like dogs to their kennels, write the history of their times as a sort of sociological survey and where I learned how the fourth estate was depopulated and the proletariat went from base to superstructure and how theContinue reading “Imminent Equilibrium”

The Club

“Oh, if I were doing nothing only out of laziness. Lord, how I’d respect myself then. Respect myself precisely because I’d at least be capable of having laziness in me; there would be in me at least one, as it were, positive quality, which I myself could be sure. Question: who is he? Answer: aContinue reading “The Club”

Codes (II)

Michal Ajvaz‘s fantastic novel The Other City is a surrealistic guidebook to the hidden spaces and invisible ‘other’ Prague. Writing in a dreamlike prose reminiscent of Borges, Ajvaz describes and explores the invisible city of the imagination that, he says, is enmeshed in the unoccupied spaces of the known world. It’s a brilliant book thatContinue reading “Codes (II)”