«At the end, all that’s left of you are your possessions. Perhaps that’s why I’ve never been able to throw anything away. Perhaps that’s why I hoarded the world: with the hope that when I died, the sum total of my things would suggest a life larger than the one I lived.»
Jeg skulle skrive om favorittene fra 2010. Det kjennes for seint, derfor skriver jeg heller om en bok jeg ble ferdig med for noen dager siden. The History of Love av Nicole Krauss er en kjærlighetshistorie skrevet akkurat slik jeg liker det. De små tingene, observert fra et helt uventet perspektiv, gjerne av litt eksentriske karakterer. Jeg kommer til å tenke på noe Unni Wilhelmsen sa i et program som ble sendt på NRK tidligere denne måneden, at nordmenn snakker om store ting på små måter; amerikanere snakker om små ting på store måter. Nå er ikke kjærlighet en ‘liten ting’, men det er kjærligheten i de trivielle ting som for meg står sterkt i The History of Love. Jeg bruker ikke ordet trivielt negativt her, for dette er en vond bok, en trist bok, en vakker bok, en ensom bok, jeg kjenner med en gang at disse adjektivene ikke er tilstrekkelige. Boken møtes i et sammentreff fra tre, kanskje fire eller fem, perspektiver som veksler avgrenset. Det er en bok som forteller fra forskjellige tider og generasjoner, ikke ulikt Jonathan Safran Foers Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close. Krauss skriver med en merkelig syntaks, med punktum der en ville hatt komma; ord som ‘and yet’ og ‘but’ får stå som selvstendige setninger. Hun tyr til klisjeer som hun bevist snur til noe nytt, hun er ikke redd for å være direkte.
«The pain of forgetting: the spine. The pain of remembering: the spine. All the times I have suddenly realized that my parents are dead, even now, it still surprises me, to exist in the world while that which made me has ceased to exist; my knees, it takes half a tube of Ben-Gay and a big production just to bend them. To everything a season, to every time I’ve woken only to make the mistake of believing for a moment someone was sleeping beside me: a hemorrhoid. Loneliness: there is no organ that can take it all.»
«The water was freezing. We would take our clothes off and dive off the bridge screaming bloody murder. Our hearts would stop. Our bodies would turn to stone. For a moment we felt we were drowning. When we scrambled back onto the bank, gasping for air, our legs would be heavy, pain shooting up the ankles. Your mother was skinny, with small pale breasts. I would fall asleep drying in the sun, and wake to the shock of ice-cold water in my back. And her laughter.»
«I lost Sari and Hanna to the dogs. I lost Herschel to the rain. I lost Josef to a crack in time. I lost the sound of laughter. I lost a pair of shoes, I’d taken them off to sleep, the shoes Herschel have me, and when I woke they were gone, I walked barefoot for days and then I broke down and stole someone else’s. I lost the only woman I ever wanted to love. I lost years. I lost books. I lost the house where I was born. And I lost Isaac. So who is to say that somewhere along the way, without knowing it, I didn’t also lose my mind?»
«Every year, the memories I have of my father become more faint, unclear and distant. Once they were vivid and true, then they became like photographs, and now they are more like photographs of photographs. But sometimes, at rare moments, a memory of him will return to me with such suddenness and clarity that all the feeling I’ve pushed down for years springs out like a jack-in-the-box. At these moments, I wonder if this is the way it feels to be my mother.»
sitater//Nicole Krauss – The History of Love