Alan Bennett, Lucian Blaga, Mona Van Duyn, Gamal al-Ghitani, Richard Adams, James Barrie, Pitigrilli

De Britse schrijver en acteur Alan Bennett werd geboren op 9 mei 1934 in Armley in Leeds, Yorkshire. Zie ook mijn blog van 9 mei 2007 en ook mijn blog van 9 mei 2008 en ook mijn blog van 9 mei 2009.


Uit: Kafka’s Dick


KAFKA:  (In a small, awe-stricken voice)  Shit.
SYDNEY:  He’s taking it very badly.
BROD:  Don’t worry.  He’ll be all over me in a minute.  But who else would treat fame like this, eh?  Chekov?  He’d be round at the estate agents, looking at a little place in the country with paddock and mature fruit trees attatched.  Zola would be installing a jacuzzi.  Even T.S. Eliot’d have people round for drinks.  But what does Kafka do?
SYDNEY:  Finds the whole thing a trial.
BROD:  Exactly.  The humility of the man.  I tell you, if I were Jesus Christ I’d be looking over my shoulder.
KAFKA:  Judas!
SYDNEY:  He’s made you one of the biggest names in twentieth-century literature.
LINDA:  Even I’ve heard of you.
KAFKA:  (With exaggerated patience)  I didn’t want a big name.  I wanted a small name.  I shrank my name.  I pared it down to nothing.  I’d have been happy with no name at all.
SYDNEY:  But that’s the secret of your success.  You’ve got a name for anonymity.  The Trial: a nameless man’s search for justice in a faceless bureaucracy.  When Eastern Europe went communist this was the book that told you about it before it happened.  In so many words…
KAFKA:  That’s it.  That’s it.  So many words.  I’ve added so many words to the world I’ve made it heavier.”




Alan Bennett (Armley, 9 mei 1934)





De Roemeense dichter, schrijver en filosoof Lucian Blaga werd geboren op 9 mei 1895 in Lancrăm, bij Alba Iulia. Zie ook mijn blog van 9 mei 2007 en ook mijn blog van 9 mei 2008 en ook mijn blog van 9 mei 2009.




The light of yesterday


I’m searching, I don’t know what it is that I search. I’m searching

for a sky from the past, for a twilight that passed. How lower

is the forehead meant for the heights of yore!


I’m searching, I don’t know what it is that I search. I’m searching

for auroras that have been, gushing, lighted

fountains – today with waters tied and defeated.


I’m searching, I don’t know what it is that I search. I’m searching

for a big hour that’s remained in me without life

like marks of a mouth on a long dead carafe.


I’m searching, I don’t know what it is that I search. Under yesterday’s stars

under the passed, I’m searching

for the extinguished light that I’ve always been preaching.




Vertaald door Lori Tiron-Pandit






Lucian Blaga (9 mei 1895 – 6 mei 1961)

Buste in Sebes, Roemenië





De Amerikaanse dichteres Mona Van Duyn werd geboren op 9 mei 1921 in Waterloo, Iowa. Zie ook mijn blog van 9 mei 2007 en ook mijn blog van 9 mei 2008 en ook mijn blog van 9 mei 2009.



A Kind of Music

When consciousness begins to add diversity to its intensity,
its value is no longer absolute and inexpressible. The felt variations
in its tone are attached to the observed movement of
its objects; in these objects its values are embedded. A world
loaded with dramatic values may thus aris
e in imagination;
terrible and delightful presences may chase one another
across the void; life will be a kind of music made by all the
senses together. Many animals probably have this kind of

Irrelevance characterizes the behavior of our puppy.
In the middle of the night he decides that he wants to play,
runs off when he’s called, when petted is liable to pee,
cowers at a twig and barks at his shadow or a tree,
grins at intruders and bites us in the leg suddenly.

No justification we humans have been able to see
applies to his actions. While we go by the time of day,
or the rules, or the notion of purpose or consistency,
he follows from moment to moment a sensuous medley
that keeps him both totally subject and totally free.

I’ll have to admit, though, we’ve never been tempted to say
that he jumps up to greet us or puts his head on our knee
or licks us or lies at our feet irrelevantly.
When it comes to loving, we find ourselves forced to agree
all responses are reasons and no reason is necessary.





Mona Van Duyn (Waterloo, 9 mei 1921)






De Egyptische schrijver Gamal al-Ghitani werd geboren op 9 mei 1945 in Guhaina, maar groeide op in Caïro. Zie ook mijn blog van 9 mei 2009.


Uit: Das Buch der Schicksale (Vertaald door Doris Kilias)


“Er und in einem Hotel arbeiten? Hätte man ihm diese Frage als Student gestellt, wäre ein verächtlicher Blick die Antwort gewesen. Er war Jahrgang 1956, und als während der Sueskrise die Dreieraggression auf die Stadt Port Said stattfand, die in jener, nunmehr in Vergessenheit geratenen Zeit die ‘Ewige’ oder ‘Standhafte’ genannt wurde, da ruhte er, unser junger Mann, noch drei Wochen im Mutterleib, bevor er ins Leben eintreten durfte. Seine Mutter konnte sich noch gut an diese Zeit erinnern. Ihr Mann verbrachte aufgrund des Ausnahmezustands die Nächte im Büro, und so war sie allein mit dem Glück, das Kind zu spüren. Es drehte und streckte sich, gerade so, als strebte es danach, vorzeitig das Licht der Welt zu erblicken. In jenen Nächten, in denen Ausgangssperre verhängt worden war, saß sie aufrecht im Bett, den Rücken an ein Kissen gelehnt, und fragte sich, was es wohl werden würde: ein Junge oder ein Mädchen?” …





Gamal al-Ghitani (Guhaina, 9 mei 1945)




De Engelse schrijver Richard Adams werd geboren in Newbury op 9 mei 1920. Zie ook mijn blog van 9 mei 2007 en Zie ook mijn blog van 9 mei 2009.


Uit  Watership Down


„At the top of the bank, close to the wild cherry where the blackbird sang, was a little group of holes almost hidden by brambles. In the green half-light, at the mouth of one of these holes, two rabbits were sitting together side by side. At length, the larger of the two came out, slipped along the bank under cover of the brambles and so down into the ditch and up into the field. A few moments later the other followed.

The first rabbit stopped in a sunny patch and scratched his ear with rapid movements of his hind leg. Although he was a yearling and still below fall weight, he had not the harassed look of most “outskirters”‘ — that is, the rank and file of ordinary rabbits in their first year who, lacking either aristocratic parentage or unusual size and strength, get sat on by their elders and live as best they can — often in the open — on the edge of their warren. He looked as though he knew how to take care of himself. There was a shrewd, buoyant air about him as he sat up, looked around and rubbed both front paws over his nose. As soon as he was satisfied that all was well, he laid back his ears and set to work on the grass.

His companion seemed less at ease. He was small, with wide, staring eyes and a way of raising and turning his head which suggested not so much caution as a kind of ceaseless, nervous tension. His nose moved continually, and when a bumblebee flew humming to a thistle bloom behind him, he jumped and spun round with a start that sent two nearby rabbits scurrying for holes before the nearest, a buck with black-tipped ears, recognized him and returned to feeding.

“Oh, it’s only Fiver,” said the black-tipped rabbit, “jumping at bluebottles again. Come on, Buckthorn, what were you telling me?”

“Fiver?” said the other rabbit. “Why’s he called that?”





Richard Adams (Newbury, 9 mei 1920)





De Schotse schrijver James Barrie werd op 9 mei 1860 in Kirriemuir nabij Dundee geboren. Zie ook mijn blog van 9 mei 2007 en ook mijn blog van 9 mei 2009.


Uit: Peter Pan


Mrs. Darling quivered and went to the window. It was securely fastened. She looked out, and the night was peppered with stars. They were crowding round the house, as if curious to see what was to take place there, but she did not notice this, nor that one or two of the smaller ones winked at her. Yet a nameless fear clutched at her heart and made her cry, “Oh, how I wish that I wasn’t going to a party to-night!”
Even Michael, already half asleep, knew that she was perturbed, and he asked, “Can anything harm us, mother, after the night- lights are lit?”
“Nothing, precious,” she said; “they are the eyes a mother leaves behind her to guard her children.”
She went from bed to bed singing enchantments over them, and little Michael flung his arms round her. “Mother,” he cried, “I’m glad of you.” They were the last words she was to hear from him for a long time.
No. 27 was only a few yards distant, but there had been a slight fall of snow, and Father and Mother Darling picked their way over it deftly not to soil their shoes. They were already the only persons in the street, and all the stars were watching them. Stars are beautiful, but they may not take an active part in anything, they must just look on for ever. It is a punishment put on them for something they did so long ago that no star now knows what it was. So the older ones have become glassy-eyed and seldom speak (winking is the star language), but the little ones still wonder. They are not really friendly to Peter, who had a mischievous way of stealing up behind them and trying to blow them out; but they are so fond of fun that they were on his side to-night, and anxious to get the grown-ups out of the way. So as soon as the door of 27 closed on Mr. and Mrs. Darling there was a commotion in the firmament, and the smallest of all the stars in the Milky Way screamed out:
“Now, Peter!”




James Barrie (9 mei 1860 – 19 juni 1937)





Zie voor onderstaande schrijver ook mijn blog van 9 mei 2009.

De Italiaanse schrijver Pitigrilli (pseudoniem voor Dino Serge) werd geboren te Turijn op 9 mei 1893. Zie ook mijn blog van 9 mei 2007