A Different Sea by Claudio Magris

By Claudio Magris

Translated through M. S. Spurr

Early this century Enrico, a tender highbrow, leaves the abundantly varied Austro-Hungarian urban of Gorizia with its combined inhabitants and tradition, to spend a number of years dwelling at the Patagonian pampas, on my own along with his historic Greek texts, his flocks and each at times a lady. He has been taught by means of his closest buddy, Carlo, a philosopher/poet who commits suicide in his early twenties, to go looking for an real existence, freed from social falsehoods. yet in his look for this inconceivable target, Enrico destroys each probability he has of an ordinary life; even after his go back to stay a lifetime of ever-increasing isolation through the Istrian beach, his makes an attempt at human sex, at significant love, are thwarted. In recounting the existence and personality of Enrico, ostensibly one in all Life's mess ups, Claudio Magris paints a remarkably wise and observant photograph of a complete global in ferment, that of the decaying Austro-Hungarian empire, shaken to its foundations by means of the good battle, and rising from the German career and the Communist revolution ripe for disintegration and perpetually looking, as does Enrico, for a cause to move on residing.

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There's hope for you yet, Bessie," he said. "Well, if I can't get Buddy on the phone, and even you won't help, I'm going to have to do something," Mrs. Glass said. Looking vastly troubled, she sat smoking for a long moment. Then: "If it was something strictly Catholic, or like that, I might be able to help her myself. I haven't forgotten everything. But none of you children were brought up as Catholics, and I really don't see—" Zooey cut her short. "You're off," he said, turning his lathered face toward her.

Glass interrupted, but cautiously. Zooey put a hand on each side of the washbowl and leaned his chest forward a trifle, his eyes on the general background of enamel. For all his slightness of body, he looked at that moment ready and able to push the washbowl straight through the floor. "The Four Great Vows," he said, and, with rancor, closed his eyes. ' Yay, team. I know I can do it. " His eyes stayed closed. "My God, I've been mumbling that under my breath three meals a day every day of my life since I was ten.

Glass seemed on the point of being diverted by Zooey's method of dealing with problems, but it was her day to suppress all forms of amusement. She stared at him for a moment, and then, slowly, a new look gathered in her eyes—resourceful, crafty, and a trifle desperate. "You know, I'm not as stupid as you may think, young man," she said. "You're all so secretive, all you children. " For emphasis, lips compressed, she brushed some imaginary tobacco flakes from the lap of her kimono. " Zooey turned and glanced at her.

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