Thursday, April 15, 2010

Aimless Reading: The G's, Part 7 (Nadine Gordimer)


July's People
Originally uploaded by Michael_Kelleher
Gordimer, Nadine
July's People


Purchased at the Fordham University bookstore for a summer course in 1990 called, "Politics and the Novel." I can't remember if we actually read this during the six week class or if I read it on my own. I recall we tried to plow through an enormous number of books and failed to get to several of them. I think we did get to this one.

I went to bed last night having made a mental note to myself to write about some specific moment in my life which has now fled. I have to spend all day writing an intro for Salman Rushdie, having spent most of yesterday doing two things: finishing Midnight's Children and fretting over the Facebook status update of Kevin Thurston, who posted that he had been killed in an auto accident, before going off to sleep for eight or nine hours, just at the moment all his friends and family in the west were waking up to read his status update. It must have seemed funny or clever or something when he went to sleep, a lot less so when he woke up to find he'd freaked out or pissed off almost everyone he knew. Anyhow, it ruined a lot of people's days, including my own.

Well, it's not coming back to me, whatever it was. Last night we watched a really shlocky french gangster film from the 80's called Diva. It's rare that a film that begins with such a high quotient of shlockiness actually manages to increase that quotient right up until the last shot of the film, but somehow Diva manages.

Still nothing. Watched a period or so of the Red Wings/Coyotes game after that.

Went to bed, red a few poems from the latest Abraham Lincoln. Read half a chapter from Javier Marias' Mañana en la batalla piensa en me, which I put down three months ago. Read an essay on Joan Mitchell by Bill Berkson. Read a poem from Peter Culley's Hammertown, which I just picked up at the Buffalo Small Press Book Fair for half price -- a great purchase.

I think I jumped on Facebook to read some of the comments after Kevin finally resurfaced. People were not happy, to say the least. mIEKAL aND posted that he saw a meteorite fall from the sky over Wisconsin. It exploded in a flash and made a sonic boom. Already websites are calling it a UFO. That would have been a sight to see. This morning I watched an animation put together from still photos of the event -- pretty amazing.

I think I nodded off to sleep after that. It took a while to get to sleep, but I eventually dozed off. I don't recall what I dreamed about. I woke, made some coffee, read my morning reading, am now ready to get to work. My mother is coming to watch me on stage with Rushdie tomorrow. Her plane arrives at 1.

from July's People

You like to have some cup of tea?–

July bent at the doorway and began that day for them as his kind has always done for their kind.

The knock on the door. Seven o'clock. In governors' residences, commercial hotel rooms, shift bosses' company bungalows, master bedrooms en suite–the tea tray in black hands smelling of Lifebouy soap.

The knock on the door

no door, an aperture in thick mud walls, and the sack that hung over it looped back for air, sometime during the short night.
Bam, I'm stifling; her voice raising him from the dead, he staggering up from his exhausted sleep.

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